Bid to pull community council back from edge

Jim Braid
Jim Braid

A campaigning resident is confident one of the East Neuk’s longest-established community councils can survive.

Jim Braid was shocked when only six people – including himself – put their names forward to become members of the Royal Burgh of Kilrenny, Anstruther and Cellardyke Community Council, instead of the required eight, at the November 13 elections.

The shortfall meant the community council would dissolve for the first time in its 40-year or so existence.

However, Mr Braid rallied by starting off the organisation of a petition asking for the group to be re-established.

It attracted well over the minimum of 20 signatures needed and Mr Braid hoped to submit it to Fife Council, allowing new elections to be held as part of the process.

Mr Braid, a former chairman of the Anstruther community council for three years, during 12 years as a previous member, said he was confident a new group would be formed, and it may possibly be in place around February or March next year.

Mr Braid said the lack of interest had taken him by surprise and, in an email to residents, described it as “deplorable and unacceptable”.

But he added: “I think this will be a wake-up call to the community and I am 100 per cent certain we will have a community council in the area.”

Mr Braid said he suspeced people had become disheartened with the community council and did not regard it as proactive or effective, after several long-serving members stood down simultaneously and another ex-member was convicted of fraud last year.

The group “lost its way a bit”, he said, and had been struggling for a few months, but he believed it could become an efficient body once again, with the right blend of new blood and a core of experienced people.