Council allays fears over village dens

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FIFE Council has offered reassurance a local community will not miss out in Levemouth’s green action plan for 2012.

Concerns were raised at last week’s Levenmouth area committee meeting after Kingslaw Den and Wemyss Den, both in East Wemyss, failed to be marked as ‘high priorities.’

It is believed both the dens may be owned by the Wemyss family or another private owner and a council officer at the meeting said this uncertainty had made it difficult to progress.

Committee chair Councillor David Alexander asked at the meeting: “Do we want to spend public money on something we don’t own?”

But Cllr Andrew Rodger said he was not prepared to accept that the council could not find out who owned the land and expressed frustration the issue had been allowed to slide.

He said: “It’s demoralising to see these areas being allowed to get into a terrible state. They should be a high priority, partly to improve the area and partly to protect against the sort of serious flooding we saw two years ago.”

Janette Hogan, treasurer of the East Wemyss Community Council, told the Mail: “Kingslaw used to have a playground and people would go for walks there. It could be used to teach schoolchildren about local vegetation and nature but you can’t get into it any more because it’s too dangerous.”

Bill Wood, chair of the community council, added: “East Wemyss is on the periphery of Levemouth and it feels like we’re treated as such. We seem to be a bit forgotten about.”

Following concerns raised at the meeting, greenspace partnership officer Kevin O’Kane said both dens had been remarked as high priorities and confirmed public funding could be available despite the land being privately owned because there was public access to both spaces.

He added Fife Council planned to investigate issues surrounding both dens and work with the landowners and local people during the year ahead to find out how the areas could be improved.