£500,000 funding for new community hub in Kirkcaldy

Debbie Kelly, Shuggy Hughes and Joanne Cairns, community development workers celebrate with volunteers at the Gallatown Park site. Fife Photo Agency
Debbie Kelly, Shuggy Hughes and Joanne Cairns, community development workers celebrate with volunteers at the Gallatown Park site. Fife Photo Agency

There were scenes of joy as it was announced this morning that Kirkcaldy YMCA’s Link Up the Gallatown project is to receive half a million pounds of funding to help tackle some of the worst poverty in the country.

The project, which was started from the Happy Days hub in St Clair Street in 2012, will use the money from the National Lottery’s Community Fund to build an extension to the former Gallatown Park Bowling Club which it is taking over as a new community centre for residents in the east of the town.

Celebrations as the funding is announced

Celebrations as the funding is announced

Parts of the area, including Smeaton and Dysart were identified as being among the most deprived in Scotland in recent child poverty statistics.

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The YM carried out parts of its activity programme, including its popular bike hub, from the bowling club while it was open. When it closed in 2017 decided it would make an ideal base for a full community facility, with outside space for sports, play and a community garden.

Liz Easton, general secretary of Kirkcaldy YMCA said: “We approached Fife Council in May 2018 to look at the feasibility of the YM taking over the building and things just took off from there.

“Local people have been fully behind the plan and willingly to contribute their thoughts and ideas on what the area really needs.

“There has been true and meaningful community support from the outset, and lots of hard work and effort has gone into making this happen.

“It is a major achievement for everyone involved and this very welcome funding will support a significant part of the planned building and staffing costs for the project for a number of years.

“We cannot than the National Lottery enough.”