One of our volunteers made a FOI request to Fife Council with regards to the total cost of the Lochgelly Charrrette, after a member of public contacted us.

We have received an answer which we have published in part below:

The Charrettes were funded by the Scottish Government with a contribution of £55,000 from Fife Council.

Fife Council received a grant award of £14,738.00 from the Fairer Scotland Fund towards the Charrette.

Expenses paid by the Scottish Government

The Scottish Government provided a grant of £38,333 to pay for any Lochgelly Charrette expenses incurred. Therefore, Fife Council has incurred no net costs for expenses associated with the charrette.

  • Pre Charrette paper: £7,405.00
  • Consultants hotel fees: £6,045.00
  • Mini Bus hire: £79.84
  • Hospitality/Catering: £2959.35
  • Overtime for Miners institute Caretaker: £487.75
  • Equipment Hire (PA etc for Town Hall): £300.00
  • Equipment costs – printer ink etc: £34.36
  • Share of Typing services for Turnberry: £375.30
  • Promotion & Marketing: £1,582.20
  • other travel expenses: £47.60
  • Total Expenses: £19,316.40

Please note: All unspent sums from the £38,333 grant provided by the Scottish Government will be returned to them.

Fife Council Officer Costs

With regard to Fife Council officer costs during the Charrette week. As Fife Council does not have a corporate time recording system I have been unable to determine the exact hours each officer involved dedicated solely to the Charrette. However, I have used the attendance lists compiled for the Charrette public sessions and the sign in sheets for the studio sessions to calculate an approximation of cost based on the average hourly rate used within Development Services of £18.62. I have allowed 1 hr per officer, per session, for travel time to and from the charrette.

Please note: I have not include time spent at the evening public sessions as these were voluntary and out with work hours.

There were 3 Fife Council officers attached to the Charrette fulltime between 8th and 13th March inclusive. I have based the cost calculation
on a basic 36 hr week for each officer as no overtime was paid and any hours worked out with core time were accrued as flexi and/or toil.

There were 2 officers attached to the Charrette part-time between 8th and 11th March to handle media and promotion.

Total Cost: £4,673.62 (admin note: We have excluded the individual listed times and estimated costings, we will provide a link to the full text at the end of the post)

Fife Council paid £55,000.00 towards the Charrette, but we can minus £14,738.00 from this cost as this was received in funding from Fairer Scotland Fund, which leaves Fife Council with a bill of £40,262.00.

Then if we include the estimated cost of staff wages and expenses of £4,673.62, the final bill for Fife Council was: £44,935.62

We do know that Andres Duany was paid £250,000.00 for his services, which seems to have been paid by the Scottish Government, so it will be interesting to see the costs of the other Charrettes held in Scotland and what was the total cost too the Scottish Government. Only time will tell if all this was money well spent, or money just thrown away.

The Lochgelly Charrette was held at a time of financial decline, and to spend £40,262.00 from the Fife Council budget on this process personally seems excessive, especially since staff are threatened with job losses and services are being cut. We have still to see any benefit from the Lochgelly Charrette, and only time will tell if the Lochgelly Charrette has been beneficial.

You can view the full FOI request and response at:

You can leave your feedback below or discuss this on the forum

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  1. Lochgellian

    September 2, 2010 at 8:52 pm

    Terrible waste of money! What did we actually buy for that amount of money, there’s absolutely nothing to show for it. Could have been spent on numerous things to benefit the community. A youth club, or some sort of centre for the younger children to have some activity classes. We have practically nothing for the kids in Lochgelly now that the Centre has closed. There’s loads of things that that amount of money could have funded. Some folk will be laughing all the way to the bank!


  2. Linwood Community Development Trust

    February 23, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    The Linwood community completed their own “Charette” (seems to be the new buzz word to aid consultants to make a packet of money – being funded by Scottish Government!). Linwood did it on a shoestring budget in 2011 (WITHOUT ANY SUPPORT) and produced our very own Linwood Community Action Plan. In a very short period of time local people are now finalising acquiring almost 5 hectares of land to build our own community facilities; we are operating 4 community projects; we have raised almost £500k; and we have now employed an architectural design team to develop our vision to manage a facility ‘for the community, by the community’. It is evident that ‘Charettes’ that are ‘done to’ communities don’t work! Denny and Fife to name a few! Those who ‘parachute’ their way into communities to ‘fix’ them for their own self financial interest – doesn’t work! What does work is ‘listening’ to communities and empowering them – by equipping them with the proper resources to make positive changes happen …. afterall… who best knows what the community needs, than the community itself! Its time those in power read the Linwood story!


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