Dunfermline Press

‘Shock’ over Saline Community Centre facing six- month closure

- By Ellidh Aitken Reporter ellidh.aitken@dunfermlin­epress.co.uk

THEY’RE going to raise the roof in Saline but it will prove costly in more ways than one.

Fife Council have submitted a planning applicatio­n for essential work that could cost £200,000 and close the community centre on Main Street for up to six months.

David Chisholm, chair of Saline Community Council, said: “It’s come as a bit of a shock.

“Repairs to the roof have been spoken about for a while but it was hoped that they could do it in such a way that the rest of the building could still be used.

“But now they’re saying the community centre could be closed for up to six months while they replace the roof.

“That came out of the blue and it presents a big problem as the food pantry, which has been a huge success, is based there and other users will be affected too.

“And if the pharmacy gets the goahead after the latest appeal, that’s due to open in the community centre too.”

The council’s planning applicatio­n is for “external alteration­s including reroofing, re-rendering and replacemen­t rainwater goods”.

A spokespers­on told the Press: “The project to replace the pyramid shaped roof to the smaller front hall is currently at costing.

“A building warrant has been granted but the planning permission is still outstandin­g.

“We hope to start the work as soon as permission­s are obtained.”

Although the applicatio­n doesn’t appear to be on the council’s planning portal, the building warrant lists the value of the work as £200,000.

The community have been told the work is unlikely to begin before the end of October.

Mr Chisholm said: “The plan now is for the pantry to move to the Steelend club which does raise issues about how people get up there, as some of the people that use the pantry are perhaps not in the best health and it’s a mile walk up to Steelend.

“We’re investigat­ing if some kind of shuttle bus could run between 11.30am and 1.30pm to take people back and forward.”

A CALL has been made to reinstate a scrapped Dunfermlin­e school bus which has caused “chaos” for parents and carers.

The PR2 bus, which serves Izatt Avenue for Pitreavie PS, was cut by Fife Council at the start of this term, with some families claiming they did not receive any warning.

One mum, who did not want to be named, said her son and his friends were left standing at the bus stop on their first day back in August.

Since then, she has sacrificed being on time for work to take her eight-year-old to school, with the only other option to be leaving him to cross the busy dual carriagewa­y at Pitreavie Industrial Estate himself.

She told the Press: “Before the summer we were advised that the other bus would have a change of route, nothing to do with our bus, it wasn’t getting scrapped or anything like that.

“Usually the school are really good at putting out reminders but they never put out a reminder about this.

“There was nothing at all to say anything. I emailed the school to ask why it was happening and they replied that they were told it wasn’t coming on.

“It’s the lack of communicat­ion, why has nobody told us?”

She continued: “Our drop-off point for the school is at the top of the industrial estate, so the kids have to cross an extremely busy road at the dual carriagewa­y at Hospital Hill.

“There are traffic lights there but I am an ex-childminde­r and I have witnessed and nearly been hit at least five times because they don’t pay attention on that road.

“I cannot leave my eight-yearold to walk that road by himself.

“There is a crossing patrol person but that can get cancelled at any point in the day so sometimes there’s nobody there to cross the kids over.

“It’s a massive, massive safety issue.”

Her son is also now left for up to ten minutes by himself after school as she rushes to collect him after finishing work.

She said: “The bus is needed around here, there are plenty families who use it, nobody can understand why it’s been pulled all of a sudden.

“I now have to take him every day and be late for work, then he’s left standing after school for about five or ten minutes by the time I get from the town to

pare parents feeling unheard and further adds to the anger.”

Fife Council confirmed that both the PR2 and PR1 buses came to the end of their contract terms in June. A new bus route was then redesigned from August and runs as PR1. ie PS due to work commitment­s.

“This bus service was crucial for a lot of them.”

Shelagh McLean, head of education and children’s services, said the council regularly reviews school transport arrangemen­ts as circumstan­ces change across Fife.

“We understand that changes to routes can be difficult, but we make sure the policy is applied fairly across all schools in Fife,”

THIS week’s winner of the Dunfermlin­e Press Scoop competitio­n, kindly sponsored by Stephens the Bakers, is Sarah Reid, of Standing Stone Walk, Dunfermlin­e, pictured inside Stephens shop on Dunfermlin­e High Street receiving her prize.

Sarah, who found Scoop hiding on page 17 of last week’s paper, is looking forward to spending the £50 worth of vouchers.

She said: “I’m delighted to have won, particular­ly as my nephew Jack won it last week!

“I’ve a girls night out at the end of the month where we all bring some food along with us, so that’s my contributi­on sorted for that!”

For the chance to win £50 in Stephens vouchers, tell us on which page in this week’s Press Scoop is hiding. Email your entry to editorial@dunfermlin­epress.co.uk by Monday, marking ‘Scoop Competitio­n’ in the subject box, and leave your address and phone number. A correct entry will be drawn at random.

The winner must be willing to be pictured in next week’s paper receiving their prize and be available when the Press calls. If our call is unanswered, we will move on to an alternativ­e winner.

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