ONE of the biggest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender events in the UK is to be staged in Largs.

The Pride Youth Games are coming to the town on August 6 to 8 next year and will bring a major economic spin-off to the local area according to the hosts at Inverclyde Sports Centre.

Principal Barry Fleeting says he is looking forward to welcoming the LGBT community to the sports spectacle and the area.

Inverclyde Sports Centre has hosted some major sporting spectacles over the years including Commonwealth Fencing, Scottish Judo Championships and 2014 Commonwealth Games Baton, as well as Scottish Premiership football sides Hamilton and Kilmarnock, all of whom have praised the 'world class facilities'.

The event will be a residential weekend of activities where young people come together and experience sport and activities in a fun, safe and inclusive environment.

Mr Fleeting said: "Leap Sports Scotland have visited Inverclyde Sports Centre on a few occasions to assess our facility for their use and it is is very good news that they have selected Largs.

"From a sports perspective, it is something new and fresh in the sporting calendar and as well as being of great benefit to the local area.

"Inverclyde Sports Centre is well prepared for hosting national events. As well as hosting the 2020 Scottish Judo tournament, we also staged the Commonwealth Fencing championships in 2017.

"We have a solid outdoor and indoor infrastructure with tier seating and we have been carrying out various improvements and upgrades to the site to make it fully accessible and inclusive."

LEAP Sports Scotland works for greater inclusion for LGBT people in sport and stands against homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in a sporting context.

A spokeperson said: "We are committed to breaking down the structural, social and personal barriers which prevent lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people across the country from accessing, participating and excelling in Scottish sports."

Cllr Alan Hill said: "This is great news and will hopefully bring many people to the town, including competitors, friends and families. It is a big opportunity for the area and having Inverclyde Sports Centre is probably what swung it in Largs direction as it has the very best facilities

" Hopefully by the time the Pride Youth Games come round we will be much further forward in the battle against coronavirus.

"Hopefully the young people and their families will have such a good time they will return to Largs again and again in future."