No-one told us about new school

Patrick Green, Colin Wilkie, Margaret Cawkwell, Derek Cawkwell, Margaret Glass, George O' Connor & Sandy Baxter
Patrick Green, Colin Wilkie, Margaret Cawkwell, Derek Cawkwell, Margaret Glass, George O' Connor & Sandy Baxter
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ANGRY residents living near playing fields in Kirkcaldy say they’re shocked that building work on a new school is due to start early next year.

They claim they have not been consulted and say the first they knew that Windmill playing fields had been chosen as the site for the replacement Viewforth High School was when they read it in the Press.

All the residents who responded to an article in the Press, in which Councillor Neil Crooks, chairman of the Kirkcaldy area committee said he was looking forward to building work starting around March 2014, said they did not believe that the playing fields was the correct choice of site, with all saying it should be either at the Randolph playing fields or the former opencast site at Kingslaw on the edge of the town.

Cathy Davies of 24 Windmill Road, said she bought her home in 2007 with assurances that the playing fields would never be built on.

“When they came to check the site for the school we were told that it hadn’t passed the tests, but now we’re being told otherwise. It seems to be being slipped in under the carpet. I know Viewforth is outdated and needs replaced, but this is not the right place.”

Derek Cawkwell at number 42, added: “I had been unaware of any consultation until my wife searched the council website. A lot of people are very angry as there was no contact with any of us directly and we are going to be the ones who will be looking right out on to the site.

“This area is bordered on two sides by houses and a busy road and on a third by an industrial estate with scrap yards, so it is not ideal. I looked at the school roll stats which shows that there are over 800 places available at KHS, while they are planning to build a new school for 600 pupils costing millions. It doesn’t make sense.”

George O’Connor at number 30, said: “I have two children who would go there and went along to a meeting of school parents last month. We need a new school but the roads here are unsuitable. It would be much better at Kingslaw where there are adequate roads.”

Louise Playford, service manager with the council said: “It’s of the upmost importance to involve the community in a major project like this. There’s a statutory education consultation going on at the minute. We’re at the early stage of the project development and as part of the process we’ll be submitting a planning application in the autumn. At that stage residents will be fully consulted and will get the chance to have their say.”