Organisers of a Valentine’s Day rally in Kirkcaldy’s town square on Saturday are urging locals to turn out in huge numbers to strike home the message that ‘We love OUR Tesco!’
The 10.00 a,m. event, which will be filmed and sent to Tesco chief Dave Lewis, will feature speakers including MSP David Torrance and David Ross, leader of Fife Council.
Councillor Tom Adams, who also works at the store, will give the closing address.
Cllr Ross said: “We’ve arranged this rally with the staff and students from Fife College following the unprecedented turnout at the public meeting held at the start of the month. Many local residents and businesses voiced their concerns about the potential closure of Tesco Kirkcaldy and the impact this could have on the town centre. That’s why we want as many people as possible to join us at Saturday’s rally.
“We need to show Tesco that their Kirkcaldy store isn’t just another supermarket; it’s a hub for a lot of vulnerable members of the local community.
“We understand the difficulties Tesco are facing and want to work with them to try to find a solution that suits everyone.”
Tesco’s announcement two weeks ago sparked a backlash prompting politicians to join staff and the wider community in a concerted effort to make the supermarket giant reconsider its position before time runs out.
Joining that campaign in force will be members of Fife College Students’ Association, who frequently use the Hunter Street store due to its proximity to the college’s Kirkcaldy campus.
In the run up to Saturday’s rally, in conjunction with Fife College Students’ Association, Fife Council is asking people to join a social media campaign on Facebook and Twitter by letting campaigners know why they want Tesco Kirkcaldy to stay open and their memories of the shop using the #tescohaveaheart
Councillor Marie Penman maintained shoppers with disabilities and those reliant on public transport would be particularly discriminated against if the town centre’s sole supermarket closed.
“In one fell swoop they would be knocked out of the game,” she commented,” and that’s what makes Kirkcaldy’s situation unique.”
She added she was clinging to the “small hope” that Tesco, given its recent problems, would see an opportunity for good PR in responding to the community campaign.
Cllr Neil Crooks, Kirkcaldy area committee chairman said he was unsure whether Tesco “fully understood” the impact closure would have on the town.
“That’s why we are doing our best to convey the deeply held feelings of the local people. We are doing all we can to encourage them to reconsider,” he said.
“This rally will help bring together individuals, local businesses and a number of different community organisations so that we can shout with one voice that we need the store to remain open.”