The future is looking bright for a run-down Kirkcaldy community centre which, at one point, was facing closure.
After months of consultation and working with architects to finalise plans, renovation work is about to begin at Hayfield Community Centre, with ambitious plans in store.
The local community, excited to see its vision for the facility in Hayfield Road begin to take real shape, has also been further encouraged by the news of an award from the Climate Challenge Fund of over £35,000 for a Food Growing Project in the centre’s grounds, to start next year.
Rosemary Potter, secretary of the management committee, welcomed the news, saying: “It is a positive investment in the Hayfield community and its future at a time when things are hard for people, and it will help us make better use of the grounds and cut carbon emissions.
“Plans for a refurbishment programme have been years in the making and, at times, a successful outcome seemed out of reach, so the community is delighted to reach this exciting stage and looks forward with anticipation to the new-look building.”
Mrs Potter thanked the Big Lottery Community Spaces Team for its initial offer of £250,000, which started the ball rolling, and Fife Council, which also contributed.
The money will fund a range of improvements to the building, including upgraded toilets and kitchen, a new storage area freeing up space for better use of the meeting-room, and a refurbished office, foyer and stage. There will also be a new nursing room and buggy park and a new boiler and upgraded heating system.
A new door to the external garden area with landscaping and play area will lead to the safe space, where separate funding from the Climate Challenge Fund will support a Food Growing Project next year. It will be led by a part-time project worker, whose remit will include reducing carbon emissions and arranging cookery classes to use the produce grown.
Around 400 people a week use the centre, and a project organiser will be employed to encourage more use of the new facilities. While the work is being done, the groups will use alternative venues around the town.
“We are very excited and can’t wait for the work to start,” said Mrs Potter.