Special meeting to discuss parking on Burntisland Links

Cars are being allowed to park on the Links
Cars are being allowed to park on the Links

Angry Burntisland residents have slammed a council decision to allow cars to park on the grass at the town’s Links.

And some are warning that if it is allowed to continue then the land used for the Burntisland Highland Games arena could be damaged.

Alex MacDonald

Alex MacDonald

But the council says it is a temporary solution to a problem brought about by the good weather and it is monitoring the situation until a permanent solution is found.

A special meeting has been organised by Burntisland Community Council for tonight (Thursday) in the Upper Library when the up to date situation will be explained.

Alex MacDonald, chairman of the council, said: “This is a temporary solution to an ongoing problem which unfortunately has not been handled very well by Fife Council. Ourselves and other organisations which should have been consulted were not and lots of people have been very upset by vehicles being allowed to park on the grass.

“In the past we have asked for barriers to stop parking on the grass but been told it is too expensive.

“Safety and preserving our green space must be the top priorities and this is just making the best of a bad situation which we trust will be resolved by next summer.”

His views were echoed by Councillor Gordon Langlands who said that Burntisland was “being strangled by a lack of car parking.”

“It is a lot worse at weekends when people are flocking to the shows and beach in the good weather. People are going to park there anyway and it’s better that it is managed than them being left to their own devices.”

A petition calling for a stop to the Links being used as an overflow car park has already collected almost 200 signatures.

It was started by resident Jim Jopling, who told the Press: “It’s a bad idea because the Links is a green area that is used for the Highland Games, pipe band competition and other events, so to be used as an overspill car park would ruin the area. There are also children running around who must be able to play safely.”

Stephanie Johnston added: “Allowing cars to park on the area is really jeopardising the games as the athletes will not attend if the arena is not fit for purpose, which it is unlikely to be if we allow potentially 194 cars to park there daily.”

Damien Woods, Parks Streets and Open Spaces manager, said: “The success of Burntisland Links as a top visitor attraction, coupled with the recent good weather, has contributed to an increase in the volume of cars and put real pressure on the available car parking spaces.

“There are alternatives at various locations in Burntisland and we are working with our colleagues in transportation to ease the volume of traffic in and around the Links area.

“In the meantime we have agreed to a trial, where we will allow parking on the Links temporarily, as a short term solution.

“We are well-aware of the importance of this area to Burntisland Highland Games and the surface conditions are being managed and carefully monitored. If there are any changes in the weather and any risk to the grass being damaged, parking will not be permitted on the Links.”