One year on and Kirkcaldy’s old pool lies eerily empty; a ghostly echo-chamber which once resounded to noise from thousands of visitors.
That scene has now become a reality at Kirkcaldy’s new swimming pool just yards along the esplanade, but what future lies ahead for its defunct predecessor?
When its doors shut last year, the Mercat’s new owners LaSalle Investment Management said the old swimming pool building would not be left to wither and decay.
Indicating it could become a much-wanted cinema, Simon Usher, associate director, added: “It is not our intention to leave the building derelict.”
This week, when asked for an update, he revealed talks were still ongoing.
“We are still working with the Council on a number of potential options but we are planning to make use of the building,” he said.
David Grove, lead development officer with Fife Council confirmed “positive dialogue” was ongoing and various options were being explored to develop the site for leisure/entertainment purposes.
Previous £40 million plans for the Mercat, which would have created a supermarket, multiplex cinema and bowing alley, were killed off in March last year when developers failed to force the Council to choose between them and Morrison’s plans for Invertiel.
However, despite appearances to the contrary, Cllr Neil Crooks reassured work was still ongoing to bring about a positive outcome for the building.
He said: “Conversations have been ongoing for some considerable time about how the Mercat’s owner can develop its business plan and Fife Council officers, almost on a daily basis, have conversations about how that business plan might look for the town.
He vowed: “We’ve no intention of leaving the old swimming pool looking like some monolith spoiling the whole front of Kirkcaldy.”