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Future of Crail Community Hall at stake in take-over bid

A community take-over of the Crail hall is proposed.
A community take-over of the Crail hall is proposed.

Crail residents have been urged to get behind a take-over bid to ensure their local hall is not lost.

Crail Community Hall is owned by Fife but Crail Community Partnership wants to bring it into community ownership through the community asset transfer process.

The initiative is at the public consultation stage and the partnership said people needed to show their support to safeguard the facility’s future.

The hall is regularly used for wedding receptions, sporting activities and events during Crail Festival, East Neuk Festival and Crail Food Festival.

One of the aims which emerged from a year-long charrette in the village was to make better use of local facilities to ensure their retention.

Heather Aird, of the partnership, said: “The main target for this is the Crail Community Hall which is currently owned and administered by Fife Council.

“It is felt that with local ownership and management we can increase utilisation, adapt the building to community needs and maintain healthy funding that guarantees a long term future for this facility in Crail.

“If no action is taken Fife Council could choose to sell this community asset on the open market.”

The asset transfer process was launched in June, last year, with funding support from the Scottish Land fund, and a stage two application has recently been submitted.

The B-listed hall designed by James Davidson Cairns was built in 1909 as the United Free Church, later renamed Crail St David’s. It became the hall for Crail Parish Church in 1954.

East Neuk and Landward independent councillor Linda Holt said: “Crail Community Hall is already a much-used and much-loved building.

“By taking over its ownership, the community will not only safeguard its future but develop its full potential for residents and visitors alike.

“The amazingly dynamic Crail Community Partnership are on course to achieve great things in Crail.”

The bid has also been supported by North East Fife’s Liberal Democrat MSP and MP

Willie Rennie said: “I’m pleased to see this process opening up which gives the opportunity to residents to have their day and back the proposal.

“Having been involved in the charrette process that has brought about this community asset transfer, I’m glad to see this positive move forward.”

Wendy Chamberlain said: “I encourage all Crail residents to submit their thoughts on this initiative.

“The hall is a fantastic asset for the community, and it would be great to see it owned and run by the Crail community directly.”

Information can be found online by searching for Fife Council Community Asset Transfer and residents can make representations by May 11 by emailing Zahida.ramzan@fife.gov.uk or writing to Zahida Ramzan, Community Investment Team, Fife Council, Rothesay House, Glenrothes, KY7 5PQ.

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