Recreation Park (Ormiston)

When is a football ground not a football ground? That seems quite a meta-heavy question for a usually straight forward easy going flim flam of a blog. However in the case of Scottish junior side Ormiston, you’d be quite close to an answer.

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The next instalment of our Scottish adventure took us from Haddington up the road to the tiny village of Ormiston, one of the smallest communities represented in the East of Scotland league. It wasn’t until we arrived that we read a preview that said “this isn’t so much a football ground and more of a public park.” That’s pretty accurate although it makes for an odd but ideal venue.

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At a lot of the grounds we encountered some kindly spirits from the clubs opened them up for us to wander around, meaning there wasn’t the usual worry about what was visible. With Ormiston that wasn’t an issue – it’s essentially a playing field in the middle of a park, albeit one with a stand.

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And that, for me, makes it a football ground. A very strange one indeed, but with fencing around the pitch, dug outs (albeit made entirely from intimidating heavy metal) and a stand. What more does it need before it qualifies as a ground?

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If you’re thinking “changing rooms, Andy, that’s what it needs” the. It also has them, even if they look slightly dingy. The front has been spruced up with a huge spray painted mural which makes it look both better and worse than it probably is. But there’s a balcony there too that offers a view of the pitch.

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It’s difficult to really rate this one due to its unique nature. As a football tourist everything is there to see. It’s slap bang in the middle of a park and you can wander around it at will. It’s not the most impressive of homes, but as the hub of a tiny community I’m not going to knock it. It takes effort to keep such a small operation going and for that the club and its staff deserve nothing but praise.

* Next week we’ll probably have a brief break from Scottish grounds and do somewhere in England. Probably Stockport. Just like Home and Away when it’s not on at Christmas.

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