A glance around Kirkcaldy town centre shows promising signs of regeneration with a number of new shops opening for business.
The anticipated revival of the long vacant McDonald’s building on the High Street will see two new shops open in the next week.
One business has moved from the east end into bigger premises in the heart of the pedestrianised zone - and there’s a new tenant destined to fill the old HMV store in the Mercat Shopping Centre.
The moves have all been welcomed by businesses and groups aiming to give the area a brighter future after a number of big closures.
Interior and furniture restorer Loved Restored has moved into the old Shoe Zone in the pedestrianised zone after establishing itself in the east end.
And the owners of the coffee kiosk stationed on platform one of Kirkcaldy station have taken one of the seven units in the old McDonald’s fast food building.
The Cupcake Coffee Shop is the first of the new units to open on Monday.
The other units are yet to be leased but Colin Devine, agent at Kirkcaldy’s Graham and Sibbald chartered surveyors, who is acting on behalf of the owner, has confirmed that one of them will be a farm produce store ready to trade next week.
“We are trying to attract niche businesses and provide them with units they are able to afford in a High Street location,” said Colin.
“Getting these two operators in first gives us confidence that they will attract other different types of users to try and make it a quality, small shopping arcade.”
Kirkcaldy’s musical instrument retailer at 239 High Street is under new ownership and a new name. Forth Music, which opened on July 1, has replaced HSK Music.
The Wee Carpet Shoppe has also shown its commitment to the town by moving to a larger premises five doors down, opening on Saturday.
Branding outside the old Walmsley Furniture Shop on Hill Street suggests K2 Texstyles are set to open soon, seeing another major empty lot occupied.
Vacant spots in the shopping centre have also received attention as clothes retailer Pep & Co is due to open on August 13 in the Mercat Centre in place of the closed HMV store.
Bill Harvey, manager of Kirkcaldy4All, is encouraged by the increasing number of potential retailers interested in investing in the town centre.
He said: “It is an ongoing process but without a doubt an encouraging one.
‘‘Landlords are working hard with investors to negotiate reasonable rents and working to get tenants in, but business rates are still the major stumbling block.”