Another twist in Fife village road saga

Andy Heer says villagers don't care whether they have a turning circle or not
Andy Heer says villagers don't care whether they have a turning circle or not

Councillors have found themselves going round in circles over plans to adopt a crumbling road in a north east Fife village.

School Brae in Letham is in a poor state of repair but can’t be maintained by Fife Council until it has adopted status.

But the road can’t be adopted until a turning circle is created at the village primary school at the top of the hill – and if a turning circle is created, the teachers will no longer have anywhere to park their cars.

And to complicate matters further, creating a turning circle was originally added as a planning condition when permission was granted for a new house to be built some five years ago.

However, the circle has never been created and enforcement action hasn’t been taken by the local authority due to ‘an oversight’.

In the meantime, there is no longer any money in the budget to carry out the work that’s necessary to upgrade the road.

Roads official Kevin Smith told north east Fife area committee that enforcement action was being pursued.

But he added that even if a turning circle was created, that didn’t necessarily mean that the adoption of School Brae could go ahead.

Work would have to be carried out on the rest of the road in order to bring it up to an acceptable standard at a cost which he described as ‘significant’.

He said the turning circle was needed for health and safety reasons.

Mr Smith said that the cost of improving the road in terms of drainage, lighting and resurfacing could possibly run into ‘tens of thousands.’

However, in the spirit of ‘community goodwill’ and in recognition of the Council’s oversight in not enforcing the planning condition, he said a review was being undertaken of the whole length of the road.

The committee asked Mr Smith to come back to a future meeting with a further report and an estimated cost of the project.

It was almost four years ago that north east Fife planning committee, which comprises the same members as the area committee, imposed the condition against the recommendation of officials.

However Howe of Fife councillor Andy Heer, pictured, commented that no-one in Letham was actually bothered about a turning circle .

“All they want is the road to be maintained,” he said.