Raith Rovers’ owner backs Kirkcaldy town centre plan

John Sim
John Sim

Raith Rovers director John Sim is the latest name to give his backing to Kirkcaldy4All’s innovative plan for a framework for growth – designed to attract investment into Kirkcaldy.

The global CEO at PKF International has met with Kirkcaldy4All to hear its plans for the town – and given his support to its collaborative approach.

He said: “My family moved to Kirkcaldy just shy of 60 years ago and in that time I have seen many changes in the town – some for the good, others more of a challenge, and the challenges we faces today are right up there.”

He added: “Over the years, whole industries have come and gone from the town but now the very fabric of Kirkcaldy is under threat from the rapid changes in the way we all live, work and spend our leisure time.”

Mr Sim met with Kirkcaldy4All’s manager, Bill Harvey, and chairman Harry Cormie, to discuss the approach it hopes will create a new framework to attract interested parties to the table.

Referring to projects in his working life, Mr Sim said: “Success has always been down to research, planning and investment. Only through investment – and delivering a return for those prepared to invest – can any project succeed. The return does not always have to be financial, but it needs to be measurable.

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“For Kirkcaldy to succeed, it requires significant investment in projects that will attract those who want to live, work and visit our town.”

Mr Sim’s comments come on the back of what many see as a step-change event held in the town last Friday. Billed as ‘Kirkcaldy’s Evolution’, an audience invited by Kirkcaldy4All heard from one of the UK’s leading urban regeneration experts, Alan Harris, of Montagu Evans. He outlined opportunities for the town based on the local authority being prepared to work hand in hand with the BID and private sector partners.

Mr Sim said: “Kirkcaldy4All’s proposal to create a framework for growth is one I support wholeheartedly. It recognises the seismic changes – and is trying to create a collaborative approach that will attract stakeholders. ”

Mr Cormie is delighted with Mr Sim’s support, adding: “Day by day, we are speaking with and meeting people from all walks who understand and support our approach. John is passionate about Kirkcaldy and we will be working with him – and others – on our next steps.”

Mr Harvey added: “Many individuals, companies and organisations are coming to the table. We need and want Fife Council to be involved and will be continuing to request its support for this unique approach. Only with its involvement and backing can we make this happen.”

He added: “We have been inspired by other towns and cities who have been proactive in their approaches. Our challenges are urgent. The opportunities are huge. We want to deliver this for our town – by Kirkcaldy, for Kirkcaldy.”

Mr Sim concluded: “All potential players and stakeholders need to be involved and on board to deliver for Kirkcaldy. I am very happy to support this initiative and help where I can and I would encourage others in the town and wider area to do the same.”