Depressing, rundown and violent with the rudest locals in the country - that was the damning verdict on Leven this week.
The town - and the wider Levenmouth area - has found itself being nominated for the title of Plook on the Plinth in the controversial Carbuncle Awards, which annually recognise some of the worst urban-built areas in Scotland,
The nomination describes the town as a “grim post industrial wasteland with regressive pretensions to being a seaside resort” with a “dying town centre haunted by aggressive beggars”.
However, far from limiting itself to criticisms of the town, it also has a go at local people, saying they are “the most ill-mannered to be met with in Scotland” with “expressions of thinly veiled aggression or utter despair, often simultaneously”.
But the nomination was blasted by Leven Councillor Alistair Hunter who described it as factually inaccurate, ignorant, ill-informed and an insult to Leven and the community.
“It’s not the way I see or feel about Leven,” Cllr Hunter said.
“We have one of the best coastlines in the country, fantastic green spaces, great schools, environmental groups and a great active community.
“It might not be an architectural gem but we are a hard-working post-industrial town, it’s who we are and where we have come from.”
Addressing comments about alcoholism, drugs and violence, Cllr Hunter said these were serious issues being faced throughout the country but the nominator had made sweeping generalisations that unfairly tarred the whole town.
“You could go to the most scenic place in the country, with the best architecture, and find fault in it,” he said. “It’s right that the spotlight should be on these things but we should also highlight the positive.”
John Glenday, editor of Urban Realm, the architecture magazine behind the awards, said they were intended to act as a catalyst for change by turning the spotlight on some of the worst built-environments in the country. We appreciate that it is provocative but it is a way to bring these issues to the fore.”