Neglected Glenrothes underpass transformed by YMCA

The underpass was officially unveiled on June 18 by Brian Robertson-Fern (pictured centre).
The underpass was officially unveiled on June 18 by Brian Robertson-Fern (pictured centre).

A neglected underpass in Glenrothes has been given a new lease of life thanks to a group of young YMCA residents.

The underpass on Leslie Road has been transformed into a vibrant public work of art as a result of the project, with the group of residents led by YMCA engagement worker, Donna Dempsey.

Fife College Access to Further education students helped with the project, which has been designed to show the plight of young homeless people.

Donna said: “We are grateful for the help of Fife College Access to Further Education students who helped prepare the underpass for our YMCA residents to visually showcase their positive journeys.”

Using their own ideas and assisted by a professional artist Ian Tayac (Paco Graff), eight young men and women spray-painted their designs to show the plight of young homeless people in 2019. The group planned the project, secured funding from Glenrothes Area Committee and were firm in how they wanted to portray their journey through homelessness, showing YMCA Glenrothes as the ‘light at the end of the tunnel’.

Councillor Fiona Grant commented: “The area committee are please to support the young folk in our community to express their journey through homelessness. Until we can eradicate it completely there will be a need to be there for those who find themselves homeless. Fife Council couldn’t do that locally without the YMCA Glenrothes.”

Brian Robertson-Fern, chair of YMCA Glenrothes who opened the underpass on Tuesday, June 18, added: “This has been a fantastic project and we are delighted that students from Fife College Access to Further Education have been able to help in the preparatory work on the walls. It’s been a real team effort by young people and a great example of partnership working.”

The official opening of the underpass was attended by Councillors Mick Green, Fiona Grant and Jan Wincott, and those involved in the transformation of the project - Conrad Spinks, Murren Reid, Jamie Mackie, Garry Devine, Ruth Hamilton, Donna Dempsey, Dudley Aitchison, Ian Tayac, Leeann McLaren, Sandra Gartshore, Sean Kilgour and Connor Scobie.