The Lochgelly Floral Display has been receiving much praise in the local community, and in the local paper, praise was given to the Lochgelly Community Council for their work on the displays, yet at the same time, another local community group, the Lochgelly Community Development Forum, appeared to have been attacked for not doing enough to support the work of the Lochgelly Community Council, even though the LCDF had successfully organised another popular Gala day for Lochgelly.
So why should Lochgelly Development Forum not do their thing and find people who are prepared to get involved in making the town look better. Already the Community Council ensures that there are filled flower tubs in parts of the town which greatly helps and hanging baskets.
It is our understanding, from discussions with some Community Councillors, that the floral displays are not created and maintained by the Lochgelly Community Council, and the praise they received should have went to Fife Council, who are responsible for the siting of the displays, and the planting and maintenance of the displays.
The press, under the section of the Times Jury further state;
The ten strong Times jury were of the opinion that a great deal could be achieved in Lochgelly with such an organisation building on the work of the Community Council, who do important greening work.
We are unsure of the important ‘greening work’ that the jury is referring to, since the Community Council have minimum involvement with the floral displays, and the only other project which we know they are working on has been at least eight years in planning and will only benefit a small minority of residents in a private street, this has been openly criticised by other Community Councillors.
Every year the Community Council complete a form which is sent to Fife Council seeking a floral grant. The floral grant is made available to all Community Councils in Fife. The Community Council receives the grant, and for the past two years they have asked Fife Council to take care of the floral displays, and so pay the grant money back to Fife Council when invoiced.
Fife Council check the barrels for damage and replace any if necessary, then they plant and maintain the displays, and will be responsible for removing the displays when out of season. We also suspect that this costs more than what is given in the floral grant, hence the need for some of the displays to be sponsored by local businesses.
Other than applying for the money, which is more or less guaranteed, the Lochgelly Community Council has no other involvement in the displays, and while praise should be given to the Community Council for applying for the money, the actual main praise should go towards Fife Council who do all the hard work.
We decided to write this article to clear up any misconceptions amidst concern that undue praise has been given to one group whilst at the same time failing to acknowledge the hard work of the LCDF who had just completed another successful Gala day that was enjoyed by the wider community.
This appears to be a small issue, but has upset a couple of community groups, and upset quite a few volunteers connected to different groups and projects, who all work tirelessly to help the regeneration efforts of the town, through their own projects and social partnership working.
We would like to thank the Lochgelly Community Development Forum and all the groups, individuals, and volunteers, they worked in partnership with, for their hard work to arrange a successful and popular gala day that the wider community were able to enjoy, and we look forward to celebrating their work organising this years Christmas Lights switch on.
We would also like to thank Fife Council for their hard work on the floral displays, and the effort they made to raise sponsorship money for the displays from local businesses. Lochgelly certainly looks brighter and the better for it.