Uninvited guests check into old Lundin Links hotel?

Lundin Links Hotel pictured this month (December 2015)
Lundin Links Hotel pictured this month (December 2015)

Concern has been growing over suggestions that the former Lundin Links Hotel has been hit by squatters.

Some residents and business people had heard talk recently about the building being occupied, while others claimed to have heard noises coming from the property.

People in the village had also received a text message in the last few days which said ‘Squatters with squatters’ rights’ were in the premises.

Some residents expressed worries about a potential fire risk at Leven Road.

One person – who described the building as “empty and disgraceful-looking” – said: “The last thing we need is this landmark going on fire.”

At present, the site is surrounded by a perimeter fence but graffiti has been daubed on the walls of the building - indicating people had at least been in the grounds.

Signs remain up saying the building is protected by Edinburgh security firm Dunedin Facilities Management – but a representative told the Mail it had had no connection with the building for over a year, which was around the time it was sold.

Some local shop workers indicated curtains which had previously been shut after the building closed were seen to be open, while another resident said she had heard noises, although she had not seen any lights on inside.

Other people told the Mail they had seen police activity at the site.

Police, however, say there is nothing to suggest the building is being used by squatters.

A spokesman confirmed there had been a recent incident of vandalism but said no reports or complaints about squatters had been received.

The well-known ‘C’ listed three-storey and attic property – which ceased trading nearly two years ago with the loss of seven jobs – was bought in October 2014 by private investment and development company company Kapital Residential Ltd, of Kinross, which unveiled plans for a high-quality ‘boutique’ development featuring retirement apartments.

The firm staged a drop-in event – ironically in Lundin Links’ only other hotel, the Old Manor – in February this year, to give local people more information about its plans.

Kapital aimed to provide over 40 units, in line with existing planning permission at the time, and indicated it would prepare a more detailed planning application, featuing a couple of extensions to the building and covering aspects like lift access for the properties, an on-site warden, communal meeting rooms, a library and games room, while “a strong sense of independent living” would be retained.

Company director Keith Punler said at the time that a fair amount of money would have to be spent but there was a wish to preserve as much of the existing building as possible. It was an iconic structure for which people felt a lot of affection, he added.

No one from Kapital was available for comment as the Mail went to press.