East Neuk park ruled out as site for new care home

The community campaigned against the site being used for a care home.
The community campaigned against the site being used for a care home.

An East Neuk park has been ruled out as a site for a replacement care home, after concerns were raised that it could still be chosen.

Fife Health and Social Care Partnership scrapped plans last year to have Bankie Park in Anstruther as the preferred site for the replacement care home.

However, it has now been two years since the search for a site started, leaving some residents to fear that Bankie Park could still be an option.

MSP Willie Rennie called on the partnership to rule out Bankie Park as a potential site, describing it as being at the ‘heart of the community’.

He added: “Fife Council’s inability to find alternative land needs further explanation.

“Have they considered looking beyond Anstruther and to other villages in the East Neuk area?

“I would really urge Fife Council to keep both the community council and the Keep Bankie Park Group fully involved in the decision making process.

“This requires a concerted approach from Fife Council, the community council and local residents or we risk being in the same position another year down the line.”

The partnership confirmed that the Bankie Park site has been ruled out and said it would keep residents up-to-date with its search.

David Heaney, divisional general manager from Fife Health and Social Care Partnership, said: “We have been seeking to identify a suitable location for the replacement of Ladywalk House for around two years, and have considered a total of 10 different sites in and around Anstruther during this time. Bankie Park was ruled out last summer in response to local opposition, and is not an option.

We have continued to work on securing a site over the past year and have reviewed a number of other options in and around the Anstruther area, however a suitable alternative has not yet been found.

“We are now actively exploring whether we can re-develop the existing site at Ladywalk House.

“Discussions with Fife Council Housing and Property Services’ colleagues are at an early stage and no decision has yet been reached. We are grateful to the community council for their support in this and will keep them appraised of progress.”

A community campaign was launched last year in response to the preference to build on the town’s only green space. The campaign, which earned the support of local politicians, was successful.