Kirkcaldy High Street traders find one voice to speak up for town

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A group of business owners in Kirkcaldy town centre have got together to create one strong voice to help initiate change.

The collective was the idea of Lorraine Gardiner, co-owner of Love Restored on the High Street who was inspired after talking with other businesses.

She said: “We are working in a challenging economic climate and from just going out in the street and speaking to other business owners I found that most of us are in the same boat.

“I thought it would be worthwhile if we got together as a collective to see if we could initiate change in a positive way.

“This isn’t about finger pointing.

“This is about like-minded people trying to do something to address the challenges we’re facing in the town centre as businesses.”

The group held its first meeting at the office of the town’s MP Roger Mullin.

Lorraine said: “We initially approached Roger to see if he knew where we could meet and he offered us his office.

“He was very helpful and it was a chance for us to ask him questions which he could answer from the government’s point of view.

“We had 14 different businesses there which I think was quite a success.

Mr Mullin said the meeting had been positive.

“Town centre regeneration is something I am very interested in, so I was happy to agree to the request to meet with local traders to discuss their concerns,” he said.

“Overall, the meeting was very positive, with local business owners keen to be proactive in their approach to the difficulties they currently face.”

Now the group aims to move forward and try to open up other channels of communication.

Lorraine said: “We want to have regular contact with bodies such as Fife Council.

“We can ask them if there is anything that we can do as businesses to help or if we have any ideas.

“Are there things that we could maybe do as individual businesses or as a group that would help the council?

“I think it’s important that we’re consulted about things that are happening in the town centre and it could be improved.

“The council could be more open and direct, and this is us looking at this problem positively.

“We all want to pull together and make Kirkcaldy town centre a success again.”