From Bard of Kelty to the Provost of Fife

New Provost Jim Leishman

New Provost Jim Leishman

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FORMER Dunfermline Athletic manager Jim Leishman says becoming Provost of Fife is one of the proudest moments of his life.

The newly-elected Labour councillor attended his first Council meeting last Thursday and was nominated for Provost by the party’s leader Alex Rowley. He was elected by 42 votes to 35.

Mr Leishman told councillors it was “amazing” to be sitting with the Provost’s chain around his neck.

Honour

“This is a proud moment for the Leishman family,” he said. “It’s a great honour and I promise to do all I can to promote Fife both locally and nationally. I will carry out this role to the best of my abilities.

“I was born in Gardiner Street, Lochgelly, from a mining background. I was fortunate to play football as a professional and I hope that, as a Council, we can create opportunities to enable all young people to make the most of their lives.

“Everyone in Fife deserves a chance to reach their potential, and that’s my goal. As a team, we can make Fife proud, and I’m delighted to be part of that team.”

Mr Leishman’s football career was cut short by injury, but it was as a manager he made his name, taking over as Pars boss in October 1983 at the age of just 29, and leading the club to the Premier Division for the first time in their history.

He went on to enjoy success at Livingston, leading them to third place in the Premier Division and a place in Europe.

He returned to Dunfermline as general manager in 2003, and began a second stint as manager in May 2005, saving the club from relegation, before eventually taking up his current role as director of football.

Tribute

Mr Leishman paid tribute to his predecessor, Councillor Frances Melville, saying she had served as Provost with “grace and distinction”.

Ms Melville was one of many councillors to offer the new Provost their congratulations.

She told him: “You will bring energy and flair to your new role and you will take forward Fife’s interests with energy and style.

“It’s a wonderful job and you will be given great civic support – enjoy it.”