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Claggan Park damaged by fire

A fire has damaged the changing rooms at Fort William's Claggan Park.

Four appliances attended the scene last night and managed to put out the blaze.

Rooms, including the changing area, have been damaged - along with the roof of the building.

At this stage it is unclear whether the ground will be suitable to stage Fort William's opening league game of the new season, at home to Strathspey Thistle on Saturday, July 25.

That situation should become clearer after a fire investigation has been completed and the council's structural engineer has assessed the building.

Millar moves to Vale

Deveronvale have signed former Elgin and Formartine striker Paul Millar.

The towering frontman joins recent addition Gary Harris in what will be a new-look attack for the Banff club next season.

Strathspey strengthen ahead of new season

Strathspey Thistle have signed three players as they gear up for the new Highland League season.

Owen Cairns and Josh Race, who are both aged 16, have joined from the Ross County youth set-up.

That duo has moved to Seafield Park along with John Treasurer, who formerly played for Fort William.

Jags boss Brian Grant is pleased to have strengthened his squad and is working on bringing more players to the club.

He said: "The two young lads who have joined from Ross County are both flying machines, who can play out wide.

"Owen is a right-back who will get up and down the wing all day long. Josh can play on the right of midfield and he is a confident player who can score goals.

"John works in the Aviemore area, so he has joined us from Fort William. He is young as well, at 18. He can play up top or in the centre of midfield."

One of the next batch of signings that Grant makes is likely to be a goalkeeper, to replace the departing Steve Dunn.

The former Lossiemouth manager has left Thistle to join Elgin City as a coach.

Grant said: "I wish Steve the best of luck. He was great in his time at the club and was a big help with the younger players we have."

Harris signs for Vale

Striker Gary Harris, who was previously with Turriff, has moved to Deveronvale.

The Banff club have also brought in defender Kieran Heads from Culter.

Meanwhile, keeper Darren McConnachie has rejoined Lossiemouth from the Princess Royal Park club.

Elsewhere, Turriff have signed former Elgin City player Ally McKenzie.

Nairn take in three from Fort William

Nairn have brought in three players who were part of an impressive Fort William team last season.

Andrew Hardwick, Callum Maclean and Kenny McKenzie have all made the move to Station Park.

Nairn manager Les Fridge said: "I think they are all good additions to the squad in general and I would like to think they would come in and challenge for a place in the team straight away.

"They all did very well in the Highland League last year, they have been playing regularly over the summer and they are all very hungry."

Hardwick and Maclean have signed two-year deals, while McKenzie has joined for 12 months.

Rothes working to stave off threat of closure

Rothes claim they are working hard to pay an outstanding tax bill to HM Revenue and Customs.

The Mackessack Park club have reportedly been served a winding-up order over unpaid tax that could be as much as £30,000.

Should Rothes be unable to find the money, it could be put in liquidation and have its assets sold to clear the debt.

A club statement read: "We wish to confirm that 'rumours' circulating about our calling from HMRC have truth in them.

"We are in communication with the HMRC and with the support from the committee, sponsors, and our loyal fans we will able clear this financial hurdle.

"Once we are clear on the financial request from HMRC we will be calling a public meeting so that we can move forward with the support of everyone who wants to see Rothes FC survive."

Formartine sign former Motherwell man Lawson

Formartine have signed former Motherwell and Ross County midfielder Paul Lawson on a three-year contract.

The 31-year-old, who was born in Aberdeen, was released by the Fir Park club earlier this summer.

He said: “I’m at the stage in my career that I need to consider what my options are outwith football.

"Having secured a job in Aberdeen there really was little to think about when Formartine came along with the offer of a contract.

"I have been fortunate to have picked up some silverware during my career at Ross County and I’d like to think I can continue that with Formartine United."

SHFL discusses two-tier set-up

The Highland League could be on its way towards becoming a two-tier set-up.

At a recent meeting, club representatives discussed a shake-up of the organisation.

A Scottish Highland Football League (SHFL) statement read:

"The League Management Committee (LMC) of the SHFL met in Lossiemouth on Thursday 25th June and, by a majority, voted to develop detailed operational arrangements for a two-tier Highland League.


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Press and Journal Highland League Table (2014-15) *

Played Wins Draw Lost GD Points
1 Brora Rangers 34 30 4 0 121 94
2 Turriff United 34 27 2 5 50 80
3 Cove Rangers 34 22 7 5 63 73
4 Wick Academy 34 23 3 8 50 72
5 Fraserburgh 34 19 8 7 43 65
6 Formartine United 34 19 7 8 26 64
7 Inverurie Locos 34 20 3 11 43 63
8 Nairn County 34 18 3 13 45 57
9 Forres Mechanics 34 18 3 13 12 57
10 Buckie Thistle 34 15 5 14 5 50
11 Clachnacuddin 34 14 3 17 -11 45
12 Deveronvale 34 9 9 16 -29 36
13 Fort William 34 8 3 23 -46 27
14 Keith 34 7 3 24 -55 24
15 Lossiemouth 34 7 2 25 -55 23
16 Huntly 34 5 5 24 -63 20
17 Strathspey Thistle 34 3 5 26 -89 14
18 Rothes 34 2 5 27 -110 11

* - All stats updated to reflect Turriff United deducted 3 points for fielding ineligible player. 


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