New chapter for library plans in East Neuk thanks to funding

Villagers in Pittenweem held a 'read-in' protest last December
Villagers in Pittenweem held a 'read-in' protest last December

Two East Neuk community groups have marked the next chapter in their bid to save their closure-threatened local libraries.

Pittenweem and Colinsburgh libraries are among a number in Fife that will be axed next March unless anyone can come up with plans to take them over from Fife Cultural Trust.

Now Pittenweem Community Trust and supporters of Colinsburgh Community Library have been awarded a share of a £100,000 pot specially set up by Fife Council to help community groups take over local authority assets.

The money - known as the Community Asset Transfer and Renewal Fund - will be distributed over the next three years and is aimed at paying for feasibility studies and other preparatory work.

Members of north east Fife area committee last week rubber-stamped awards of £4850 for Pittenweem and up to £4000 for Colinsburgh.

In the case of Pittenweem, the village’s Community Trust will use the money to help build a business plan with the aim of leasing the library in Cove Wynd and running it as a community-led facility.

Meanwhile the committee heard that the supporters of Colinsburgh Community Library plan to set themselves up as a charitable trust but are still at an early stage of development.

They will be awarded the money they need once detailed costs are worked out, but the money will be used to help support a business and upgrade kitchen facilities .

Welcoming the funding, Councillor John Docherty said both communities had been ‘devastated’ by the loss of their libraries.