Hillfoots RFC president Paddy Sherrard says the club is aiming big as it looks to secure planning permission for a new sports hub.

The Tillicoultry club want to provide a facility for the whole community to use.

And the Rams supremo believes the club can be a force for good in the area for years to come.

Sherrard told Advertiser Sport: “We are very firmly at the heart of the Hillfoots community, and we see ourselves as one of the positive clubs in the area.

"One of the key things we are doing at the minute is looking to establish a community sports hub in Tillicoultry and we’re hoping to be able to release plans for that in the new year.

“The intention is to build on the current sport facilities in the area and enable other sports to be played on Tilly Park. We’re looking for a large indoor hall with badminton courts and an area for gymnasts, and we want a cafe in there too.

“Although the rugby club is driving it, it’s for all sports.

“It’s all part of a bigger plan. Eventually we want to be able to get an all weather pitch which can be used for football and rugby all year round. Those are expensive so we’ll be doing lots of fundraising.

“We are planning big, and hopefully in five to ten years time we’ll have a fantastic community sports facility.”

Indeed, 2017 has already been a fine year for the club. They were recently handed a boost when former junior player Jamie Bhatti, now a Scotland international, donated one of his shirts to the club and took time to speak to youngsters, and Sherrard says the prop is a great example to follow.

He said: “The fact that Jamie thought of the club was fantastic. He’s an inspirational guy, and he took time out to talk to the kids. He’s a great role model.

“The way the SRU is encouraging international and professional players to get out into communities is really good. We want to do that at a club level.

"Some of our senior players go down and help with the juniors so that they can see the pathway from primary school right up into the first team.”

On the pitch, ‘Foots have excelled, climbing to second in the Caledonia League Division 2 (Midlands), and Sherrard believes they are well-positioned for a tilt at the league title.

He added: “It’s been a very good season so far. Our only loss was against Blairgowrie, who are at the top of the table, and we’re looking forward to welcoming them to Hillfoots for what is likely to be the league decider.

“We’ve got a young side who have trained hard and earned the right to be in the position they are in just now.

“One of our big aims for the season was to make sure we are able to get two teams out every Saturday. Our second team, the Rams, have had some very tough games and they have done well.

“Having two teams gives the younger guys a chance to develop in the second fifteen, and those who really want to push themselves have the chance to go on and play for the first team.”