Thousands of objections to Kirkcaldy car park closure order

CAMPAIGNERS against the closure of a town centre car park will present Fife Council with one of the largest petitions ever seen in the area.

Save Tolbooth Street Car Park will deliver over 4500 petition names, as well as a giant postcard signed by even more objectors, against plans to close the car park and turn it into a swimming pool and leisure complex.

They plan to present the objections at the Town House on Friday.

The response comes as Fife Council's 21-day consultation over a proposal to remove Tolbooth Street from its list of car parks – the latest stage in the process towards it closing completely ahead of building work – comes to an end on Thursday.

Alistair Cameron, spokesman, said: "I don't think I can remember another petition and campaign which has galvanised so many people. It's really hit a raw nerve.

"Campaigning has been one of the easiest jobs ever because so many people want to sign – and we're handing in 4500 from the 7000 plus we have gathered.

"The biggest issue is people still didn't realise or even believe that it's the open air car park that is closing.

"People think the multi-storey is being knocked down – and people hate multi-storeys. They aren't car friendly and the number of accidents in them are huge – that's why the open air car park is absolutely integral to the High Street. The way Fife Council described it meant that people were oblivious.''

He also criticised Council leader Peter Grant's stance that the ''silent majority'' backed the pool development on the site of the car park.

Mr Cameron continued: "Everybody disagrees with the council on this issue.

''There is no silent majority – it just doesn't exist and the Council knows it.

''The big question now is whether Fife Council will listen to the people."

The campaign to save the car park has gathered steam since its launch in November, with campaigners collecting signatures, surveying local opinions and also starting a Facebook page.

Mr Cameron added: "The general attitude towards Fife Council was extremely unfavourable. Many times people said we were running a good campaign, but the Council would never listen. On this occasion we really hope it does because there are lots of options."

Ian Smith, lead officer for traffic management in mid Fife, said that the Council had received a number of objections.

He said: "The statutory notification doesn't ask people if they are in favour. We've had some objections, but some of the folk I have written to have subsequently replied and withdrawn their objections."

A report will go to the Kirkcaldy Area Committee meeting on Wednesday.