£2m pledge for Leven rail link

THE proposed Leven to Thornton rail link has been given a £2 million boost from Fife Council.

News of the commitment for the infrastructure – such as access road and platform – was announced at last week's meeting of the policy, finance and asset management committee.

The funding is coming from the Scottish Government's local government finance settlement and Fife Council's revenue budget.

The 2 million will be taken from an estimated 77 million which is to be invested across Fife on projects such as new school builds in other areas of the county.

Councillor David Alexander said the news would have people "dancing in the streets of Methil" and that the announcement showed Holyrood that the council was serious about the project and prepared to "put its money where its mouth is."

"This is absolutely fantastic news," added Cllr Alexander.

"I'm delighted about the 2 million for the Leven rail link, it's so far so good.

"It pins to the wall our commitment to this project.

"It rights the wrongs of the past – this project is 'unfinished business' for those of us who have campaigned since the 80s, like Tricia Marwick, now MSP.

"The funding for this is due to the budget the new administration passed and the additional resources provided by the Scottish Government.

"It would not have been available had the political changes last May not occurred."

Cllr Mark Hood said it was a "very exciting time" for the rail link, which now had to be given every benefit it could get from the council.

Cllr Hood added the money promised for the link should also be ring-fenced so that it could not be spent elsewhere.

"We should also now create a working group so that we can see exactly what the benefits of this will be," he added.

The chair of the committee, Cllr Elizabeth Riches, said: "I'm delighted to announce this 77 million spend on vitally important capital projects, including the Levenmouth rail link.

"The benefit of these builds will be felt right across these communities."

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