FANS could be cheering on Dunbar United from a new 200-seater stand before the end of the season.

The club has been enjoying bumper crowds at New Countess Park, with fans delighted to be back cheering on their team after a season ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic.

A debut Scottish Cup run has boosted numbers through the gates and the club has now been given the green light to build the stand at its home ground.

Stuart Robertson, chairman of the East of Scotland Football League (EoSFL) Premier Division outfit, was delighted with the news.

Attention now turns to finding £80,000 to cover the cost of the stand, and Stuart said: “It is just pressing on with the hard work to raise the remainder of the funds.

“We have made good progress and the board is incredibly confident it will be a reality but there is still quite a lot of work to do.

“We are about halfway there with the fundraising.”

The stand will also include a covered area for disabled supporters.

A concrete foundation will be put in place before the stand is then built along the touchline.

The club chairman stressed that the actual construction of the stand was not a long process and, when money was in place, it would take only a matter of weeks to be finished.

The number of spectators through the gate has risen on the previous season when fans could cheer on their team.

Stuart told the Courier it put them towards the top of the EoSFL table, alongside title-chasing Penicuik Athletic and Tranent Juniors, as well as heavyweights Musselburgh Athletic and Linlithgow Rose.

East Lothian Council’s planning department approved the proposals, which also won support from the town’s community council, earlier this month.

Ward councillor Norman Hampshire welcomed the announcement and felt it was a sign of the club progressing.

He said: “I think it is fantastic.

“It will be a major improvement to the ground and it will be really welcomed by the older spectators that Dunbar has because it will give them a seat to sit in, watch the game and shelter from any wild weather in the winter months.

“The club is really moving itself into a really professional set up.”

East Lothian MSP Paul McLennan, who is also a Dunbar ward councillor, was previously involved with the youth academy at Hibernian Football Club.

He was “absolutely delighted” for the Seasiders and said: “The club has shown fantastic ambition in developing the proposals, after doing so well in its first Scottish Cup ties this year.

“I wish to pay special thanks to the late Malcolm Jones, father of the previous Dunbar United manager Geoff Jones. Malcolm put a lot of work into the development of the idea – perhaps naming the stand after him would be a fitting tribute.”

Finally, Dunbar ward councillor Sue Kempson described it as “a positive step”.

She said: “I am very pleased they have got somewhere for their fans to sit and watch the games in comfort.

“My initial reaction is this seems like a very good idea and I am very pleased for them.

“They are a very active club and the more they can improve the better.”