We contacted all the local councillors for the council wards of the Lochs, Lochgelly & Cardenden, and Cowdenbeath for their response to publicly raised concerns over the proposed Lochore Meadows Visitor Centre.

We asked our local representatives three questions:

  1. Do you support Fife Council/Fife Countryside & Coast Trust bid to continue with the proposed plans?
  2. What steps have you taken to address the issues raised by your constituents?
  3. What recommendations do you propose to resolve the current issues for the benefit of all parties concerned?

Alistair Bain

Cllr Alistair Bain
Cllr Alistair Bain

Ward: Cowdenbeath
Party: Scottish National Party
Website: FifeDirect

My understanding is that the Labour Administration Councillors have accepted the decision made at the public meeting on the 5th Dec. Therefore the Main Centre will not be going ahead at the moment. Fife Council has approved planning (16/02023/FULL) 23/12/2016 Erection of pavilion building (golf club/shop and football changing rooms) with associated parking. If this goes ahead after a new tender which according to Cllr Mark Hood would cost £50k? Said £50k would have to be taken from the funding for the New Centre? I would have to assume that there would also have to be another tender process for the New Centre which again I would have to assume would be another £50k which again would have to come out of the funds for the New Centre? Therefore unless additional funding is provided Fife Council will have to further reduce the size of the building.

I would not support Fife Council/Coast & Countryside Trust going ahead with the full proposal which includes a New Smaller Centre at this time, the project should be taken back to committee to be looked at again and for the necessary funding to be allocated.

I have had a meeting with Grant Ward Head of Area services along with Cllr Ann Bain to talk over questions raised at the first public meeting.

I believe there is a relatively simple solution to the lack of funding for the present upgrade to Lochore Meadows. The recently approved cycle track at Glencraig including clubhouse and car parking could instead be constructed within the Meedies saving the cost on the car parking at least. The savings from that project could then be used for the New Centre. If the cycle clubhouse could also be incorporated into the main centre that would provide even more extra funds.

The Golf and Football facilities should go ahead as per the vote taken and agreed on by the administration councillors at the public meeting on the 5th Dec. The New Centre will have to go back out to full consultation. This will take time and funding, but we will not improve on this mess by rushing headlong into another mess.

Gary Guichan

Cllr Gary Guichan
Cllr Gary Guichan

Ward: Cowdenbeath
Party: Labour
Website: FifeDirect

I have not received any requests from either constituents within my ward nor community groups within my ward.

Peter Lockhart

Cllr Peter Lockhart
Cllr Peter Lockhart

Ward: Cowdenbeath
Party: Labour
Website: FifeDirect

Autoresponder received. Cllr Peter Lockhart has been unavailable to his constituents from at least June 2016 due to health matters.
I am unavailable until further notice. Please contact the Members Services team on 01592 583101 or at members.services@fife.gov.uk. If you are a constituent seeking assistance, please contact my colleague Cllr Gary Guichan on 01383 300749 or at cllr.gary.guichan@fife.gov.uk

Ian Chisholm

Cllr Ian Chisholm
Cllr Ian Chisholm

Ward: Lochgelly & Cardenden
Party: Scottish National Party
Website: FifeDirect

Admin note: Response received and added 7th January 2016.
It boils down to this….do we want to accept the proposal as is or reject it in the hope of gaining more funds next Administration. We could lose the designated funding. My view is that when we handed over the Meedies to a hands off agency (not Fife Countryside Trust) the advantage was they could canvass for extra funding outside the Council budget.

My view has been that if the design was capable of being added to then it could be acceptable…but not in its present form. I was keen to see what Lorna Betts Committee decided. I think the whole thing should be put off until we can see if the design can be improved and if its possible for the existing building to be upgraded…..but most of all to see if we can get extra funding from other sources.

I am happy for the funding committed by this Administration to be risked in favour of better plans…..the Meedies deserves it.

Linda Erskine

Cllr Linda Erskine
Cllr Linda Erskine

Ward: Lochgelly & Cardenden
Party: Labour
Website: FifeDirect

Email was read on 31 December 2016 12:05:20. No response.

Mark Hood

Cllr Mark Hood
Cllr Mark Hood

Ward: Lochgelly & Cardenden
Party: Labour
Website: FifeDirect

Thank you for the opportunity to comment but I don’t make contributions to your website.

Ann Bain

Cllr Ann Bain
Cllr Ann Bain

Ward: The Lochs
Party: Scottish National Party
Website: FifeDirect

In relation to your email below and Lochore Meadows new proposed build I have attended both public meetings. I arrange a meeting for myself and Cllr Alistair Bain with Grant Ward, Head of Area Services on the 1 December to discuss matters that were raised at the first public meeting. After attending the second public meeting on the 5 December I again emailed Grant Ward on the 13 December asking what the current positon was after members of the public rejected the plans for the proposed new centre but were happy for the Golf Club /Shop and Football changing rooms to go ahead. I received a reply on the 20 December to say that there is no update at this stage as the Council is still considering its options. I will continue my dialogue with Grant Ward early in the New Year to see how this can be progressed with an outcome that will be acceptable to both the people and also the Labour Administration that created this mess in the first place.

In my opinion the whole consultation was handled badly and that the people of Benarty felt that the Council has let them down by not carrying out proper consultation.

Lochore Meadows is a huge visitor attraction and requires a new centre that is fit for purpose and will enhance the park and attract further visitors.

It’s up the people of Benarty to decide what is best for the area.

Alex Campbell

Cllr Alex Campbell
Cllr Alex Campbell

Ward: The Lochs
Party: Labour
Website: FifeDirect

You may have saw statements I made in the local press recently regarding lochore meadows which states my position that that project should go as planned, you ask what steps I have took to address issues raised by my constituents I have attended both public meetings in lochore institute regarding the public concers and I have not had this matter raised at any of my surgeries held since this matter came to concern, your third question has been answered in the response to question one.

Mary Lockhart

Cllr Mary Bain Lockhart
Cllr Mary Bain Lockhart

Ward: The Lochs
Party: Labour
Website: FifeDirect

I have not yet been asked for comment by either of the community councils in the Ward I represent; nor by the Benarty Forum; nor by the group set up at the first of the two public meetings to consider the issue of the Meadies Visitor Centre.

When any one of these groups asks me for a statement, I will gladly issue it to each of them, and will be happy for the groups to publish as they see fit.

(I believe the Chairs of each of the groups is aware of this).

Load More Related Articles
Load More By Loch of Shining Waters
Load More In Community

4 Comments

  1. Tam

    January 7, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    I see Councillor Erskine manages to get her daughter to do her dirty work when it comes to this issue on facebook. She slagged off the journalistic quality of Shining Waters’ piece on the FCCT pulling out of the Meedies on the closed Lochgelly Past & Present fb page. Councillor Hood gave it a like, otherwise keeping his pus shut.

    Councillors are public servants. This means they are supposed to serve the public who pay them.

    Reply

  2. George Dod Kinnell

    January 7, 2017 at 10:53 pm

    Well maybe we shouldn’t respond to Linda Erskine’s request for our vote, and L.P & P. should wake up to being used. And Mark isn’t doing his replacement any favours with his attitude, no that he will be giving a “flying duck”.

    Reply

  3. […] complete our coverage of local councillors’ responses to the on-going controversy over the new visitor centre at the Meedies, we are reproducing the […]

    Reply

  4. […] Benarty & Lochgelly Community Councils, former Lochs councillor Willie Clark, various current Labour, SNP and Conservative councillors for the area, as well as the constituency MSP Annabelle […]

    Reply

Leave a Reply

All fields are optional. You do not have to use your real name, pseudonyms are accepted.

Check Also

Music education in Fife facing decimation

A Fife Councillor has launched a petition appealing to Council leaders to reject proposals…