Councillor wants bridge made safer

Cllr David Graham at the bridge. Picture by fife photo agency
Cllr David Graham at the bridge. Picture by fife photo agency

A Methil councillor has spoken of his concerns regarding the safety of a footbridge close to a proposed development of over 100 new homes.

Cllr David Graham, who lives just 10 minutes from the bridge, is very concerned that several of the bridge’s metal barriers are damaged or even missing, leaving it wide open, and has labelled it “completely unacceptable”.

Fife Council confirmed that the bridge has been the target of metal thieves, who have stolen a number of the metal barriers, leaving a dangerous drop into the River Leven below.

Enabling work, involving the clearing of vegetation, and the erection of facilites, etc, on the new housing estate, which will see 101 affordable homes built on the former Glencast, has already started.

And with the first finished homes to be handed over to Fife Council by the first half of next year, Cllr Graham wants to see action taken sooner rather than later regarding the safety of the bridge, which provides footpath access over the River Leven and into the wider Levenmouth area.

He said: “I welcome the proposal to build the much needed affordable homes on the site but the bridge which sits just yards from the site is in completely unacceptable condition.

“I have raised the issue with council officers as the bridge in its present condition poses a real threat to health and safety and needs addressed immediately.

“Hopefully an agreement can be found between the council and the owners to have the bridge railings replaced to bring the bridge back to an acceptable condition.”

Construction on the former Glencast site is being completed by Robertson Homes Partnership on behalf of Fife Council, and a spokesman for the company said: “We are looking forward to working in the local community.”

With much of the River Leven, and surrounding infrastructure under the ownership of various different land owners, Fife Council is under no obligation to complete repairs to the bridge in question. However, the local authority is trying to find a more permanent solution following the theft of the barriers. David Paterson, Locality Office for Levenmouth, said: “Fife Council is not the owner of the bridge however we are working with the owners, who are willing participants, to find a solution that is robust and sustainable but does not use metal. Clearly we are concerned that replacing the railings like for like may encourage more unwanted attention. In the meantime concrete barriers have temporarily been placed on site , and we would ask anyone walking over the bridge to take appropriate care and stay away from the bridge edge.”