Golden arches on horizon for Leven?

McDonald's (picture by Walter Neilson)
McDonald's (picture by Walter Neilson)

A visit to McDonald’s could make our day if the fast food giants move into Leven.

The burger giant confirmed this week it IS keen to open a new outlet in the area, and that sparked a huge debate online and in the community.

John and Janet Kelly, of Kennoway, who celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary last week, with a visit from Cllr Alistair Hunter (picture by Andrew Beveridge)

John and Janet Kelly, of Kennoway, who celebrated their diamond wedding anniversary last week, with a visit from Cllr Alistair Hunter (picture by Andrew Beveridge)

A site next to new Aldi store being built off Windygates Road is been mooted as one possibility, but the UK-wide chain said it is also looking at other locations.

A spokesman said: “We are always looking for new sites and can confirm Leven is an area where we would like to invest, open a new restaurant and create jobs.

“We are looking at several potential opportunities in the area but currently have no confirmed plans.”

Although any opening remains rumoured rather than confirmed, the prospect of McDonald’s arriving in Leven has sparked comment - over 200 postings were left on our Facebook page last week, while local councillors and businesses also had their

Councillor John O’Brien said: “This is big news and will put Levenmouth on the map, and attract more business to the area.

“I am a big fan of McDonald’s – whether we like it or not, junkfood is here to stay. It’s up to each indivdual to make their own choice.

“This will save all our local youngsters going to Kirkcaldy or Glenrothes. I am all for this.”

Cllr Alistair Hunter welcomed the opportunity for more jobs in the area.

He said: “I’d give a cautious welcome to the proposed McDonalds development in the town.

“I’m aware that there are mixed opinions on it, but we have to take a measured approach to such types of development that give residents choice and variety.

“It will bring additional jobs to the area and I would hope it would also bring a commitment to be a good neighbour and a willing participant in Levenmouth.”

It’s thought the firm might favour an area with space for a drive-through facility, which would be less easy to come by in the town centre.

But how would it impact on the existing small food outlets?

Mike Crook, of Wallace’s fish and chip shop on Broom estate, said: “I can understand why McDonald’s might want to come to this area, and its reasons for doing so – I think it suits their demographic very well – but, personally, it would not be a good thing.

“We offer things it doesn’t, such as a delivery service, but the way it operates, I think it would suck up a lot of the trade from a lot of us.”

Mr Crook speculated that McDonald’s might prefer to build its own premises, rather than coming into an existing site on land fit did not own, but it was impossible to say.

He conceded there were too many fast food shops in Levenmouth and competition in the area was “very, very stiff”.

“It will alwyas be a challenge for all of us to keep our trade going as best we can,” said Mr Crook.

“We have our kind of premise set out but I think if McDonald’s does come here, families will go along there like a shot.”

Another restaurant boss thought McDonald’s would be good for the town.

Shenuar Hussain, a partner at the Taste Of India in Union Place, said he appreciated fast-food bosses might be wary, but the additional jobs and business might help Leven.

“McDonald’s is a fast-food restaurant, we are an Indian restaurant,” he added. “We’re two completely different places.”

Alistair Suttie, chairman of Leven Community Council, added: “It was quite clear from the planning consultations held last year, that there was an appetite for this kind of development.

“We would welcome any new business into Leven and look forward to studying any proposal it may have. A lot would depend on the location, given the recent closure of the shop on Kirkcaldy High Street.”

Those in search of a fast food treat currently have to travel to either Glenrothes or Kirkcaldy to get their fix.

McDonald’s has closed two Fife branches within the last two years - the Kirkcaldy High Street store closed almost two years ago, and still remains vacant. Just four months ago, the branch on Dunfermline High Street closed.