We need to make our streets safe

Alan and Tina McLean, whose son Barry was stabbed to death in 2011. They are organising a parade against knife crime in Kirkcaldy later this month.'Photo ; WALTER NEILSON
Alan and Tina McLean, whose son Barry was stabbed to death in 2011. They are organising a parade against knife crime in Kirkcaldy later this month.'Photo ; WALTER NEILSON
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A PARADE against knife crime is set to take place in Kirkcaldy next weekend.

The event is part of a campaign inspired by the death of young Burntisland man, Barry McLean.

The 27-year-old father was killed by a single knife wound in an incident which took place in the town’s Abbots View in May last year.

Barry’s devastated parents, Alan and Tina McLean, decided to fight back after Sean Kitchener walked free from court in August after admitting he “poked” their son in the stomach with a knife but denying murdering him, lodging a special defence of self defence.

The couple are campaigning for an end to the weapon carrying culture in this country.

And the parade through Kirkcaldy town centre on Saturday, October 27 in memory of Barry is just one part of this.

Alan explained: “The parade’s been organised by ourselves and community members.

“We want to get the message out and stop knife crime.

Safer

“We need to make our streets safer than what they currently are, violent individuals need to ‘Ditch the Knife and Cherish Life’.

“We need to protect not just our communities today but those of our children and our children’s children.

“This can’t go on.

“Not one week goes by when we don’t hear about knife crime happening somewhere on the TV.

“We still look for Barry coming through the door every day.

“We miss his smile and his laughter.

“We need to make sure that nobody goes through what we, and others, have been through due to knife crime.”

Hundreds

Hundreds of people are expected to take part in next Saturday’s parade, which starts at Thistle Street at 11.00 a.m before passing along Charlotte Street and the High Street.

A second parade demanding action against knife crime is to be held in Edinburgh on November 17.

Both are to be filmed and presented to the Scottish Government along with a petition, which has almost 1500 signatures so far calling for more to be done about knife crime, including more to get the message out to younger generations and more random searching being conducted by police.