Plans for a new tourism project along the length of the River Leven have taken a major step forward.
The aim of the project is to better connect the communities along the river, encourage biodiversity, improve water quality, develop the river as an economic driver for the area, and promote use of the river for sport and leisure.
It is hoped that work will begin at the Levenmouth end and continue along to the source at Loch Leven.
One part of the project will focus on a 5km stretch of the river in Levenmouth, developing a series of paths to help connect the communities.
The project has now been awarded £250,000 from Sustrans, the UK sustainable transport charity, and £62,000 from SEPA’s Water Environment Fund to undertake a feasibility study and scoping work which will begin this month.
Councillor Colin Davidson said the funding announcement was a “fantastic boost” for the area.
“Working with these organisations, Fife Council staff will be working hard to create opportunities for the communities who have access to the river,” he added.
“In the past the river was at the centre of economic development of these communities, with mills and factories all using the river. In the future, by reconnecting with the river, local communities will once again have the ability to use this resource to create employment, but in a more environmental way.
“The river will provide opportunities for education, commerce and culture, once the proper infrastructure is put in place. Communities and businesses will be at the heart of the process, as it’s their river and Fife Council officials are committed that they will decide on how any final project development will take shape.
“This announcement is an exciting addition. This initiative will see the area opened up for investment and opportunities.”
Cllr Davidson also said plans for the 8.3 mile ‘Levenmouth Loop’ – a walking route which will take in all the best parts of the area – are progressing.