Changing of the guard as Fife councillors take their leave

Cllr Kay Morrison
Cllr Kay Morrison

In just three months’ time voters will be heading to the polls again, to elect their local councillor for the next five years.

And regardless of that great unknown – how people will vote – Fife Council is set to see many changes, as councillors stand down, and new faces stand for election.

Fife Councillor George Kay

Fife Councillor George Kay

Several have already announced their decision to retire from the council, the most high profile, Fife’s depute provost Kay Morrison.

After 18 years, Cllr Morrison has decided to call it a day, planning to move closer to her family in England.

“I don’t think I expected to be a councillor this long,” she joked, “but it has been fascinating.”

Cllr Morrison paid tribute to the people she had worked with in the council.

“They are people who go the extra mile to make things better for their fellow human beings,” she said.

She also highlighted her period as depute provost.

She said: “It has given me the opportunity to do all sorts of things and meet people I would not otherwise have had the opportunity to meet, right across Fife.”

The list of departing councillors also includes the Kirkcaldy area’s longest serving councillor, George Kay.

Announcing his decision, the Burntisland, Kinghorn and West Kirkcaldy SNP councillor commented: “It has been a great privilege to represent the communities in my ward and I do hope the work I have undertaken has made some difference.”

He said he was handing “the baton on to younger and more able people.”

Local Labour activist Gordon Langlands has already been selected to contest the seat for the Labour Party.

While some familiar names disappear from the council benches, a familiar name is bidding to take a seat on the council.

In Kirkcaldy East, Ian Cameron will be standing for the Labour party – he’s the son of well known former councillor Jock Cameron, who represented the Dysart area for many years.

Mr Cameron is standing in the seat held by Kay Carrington who recently died.

Labour’s Charles Haffey has represented Leven, Kennoway and Largo for the last 10 years, but has now decided to stand down.

“I have very much enjoyed being a councillor, it has been very rewarding, particularly in my role as Armed Forces Champion,” he said.

Along the coast from him, Buckhaven, Methil and Wemyss’ representative for the last 10 years has also decided to retire.

Cllr Jim Young is at the end of his second term of office – he also served on the council between 1995 and 1999.

“I have enjoyed it,” he said this week, “but now I am looking to spend more time with my grandchildren.”

The Labour party has been quick off the mark and ahead of other parties in announcing candidates and launching its 2017 campaign – even before all the party’s Fife candidates have been selected.

Council leader David Ross and area chairman Neil Crooks have already confirmed they will be seeking re-election in Kirkcaldy North, while in the town’s central ward, Judy Hamilton will be standing again.

The party met recently celebrate its “achievements in the Kingdom over the past five years” and also to discuss the vision for the forthcoming term.

The group also paid tribute to those current councillors who have chosen to stand down this time.