Trader’s concerns over anti-social behaviour in Templehall

Cafe owner Gavin Campbell outside his business -
credit - Fife Photo Agency
Cafe owner Gavin Campbell outside his business - credit - Fife Photo Agency

A Kirkcaldy cafe owner claims anti-social behaviour and criminality close to his business is driving away customers and ruining trade.

Gavin Campbell, who owns Tea Hall Cafe in Dunearn Drive in the town, said he has witnessed drug dealing, violence and intimidation as well as drunkeness and drug taking outside his premises for over a year and is now calling on the police and other authorities to do more to tackle the issue.

Mr Campbell, who has run the cafe for the last two years, said the situation on some days is now so bad that it is forcing some residents to avoid the area altogether.

And he has called on the authorities to do more to tackle the problem.

“I have many customers who use to call in daily but now avoid the area altogether, especially the older ones,” explained Mr Campbell.

“I’ve had people appologise for not coming in anymore because they feel intinmidated by the groups that gather and the anti-social behaviour that is now common place, in Templehall,” he added.

“Drunkeness, drug taking, begging, even one idiot riding his motorbike at high speed along the pavement, I’ve seen it all.”

Mr Campbell now fears that if the situatuion doen’t change, it could sound the death knell for his business.

“I’ve worked hard to set up the cafe and have my own family, as well as those of three employees who rely on it being a success, but I’ve suffered a significant downturn in takings and something needs to be done.”

“I’ve spoken to many other shop owner and their feelingas are the same, something needs to be done before it’s too late.”

Mr Campbell has also called on his MSP David Torrance to see if he can help improve the situation for shop owners in the area.

Mr Torrance has since spoken to officers regarding concerns.

“I am aware of the ongoing issues in Templehall and am in support of the local businesses and residents who are frustrated by what appears to be a lack of progress,” Mr Torrance told the Fife Free Press.

“They are right to raise their concerns, as any criminal or disorderly behaviour in Templehall must be dealt with so that affected businesses can continue to play their important role in the local community.

“While Templehall has a long-standing partnership approach to policing, with co-operation between community wardens, the police and the community, this ongoing loitering problem seems to be particularly challenging.

“I have been in contact with Police Scotland regarding the situation as I would like to see progress in tackling this issue.”