The dream of a dedicated LGBT centre for Fife is to become a reality after plans to transform a vacant shop building in Kirkcaldy town centre were given the green light.
Pink Saltire, the charity which has organised the hugely successful annual Fife Pride events attracting thousands of people to the town since 2017, are behind the ambitious project.
They say it’s now “full steam ahead” with efforts to bring the new facility to the town.
A fundraising appeal has been launched to help cover the costs of creating the hub which will be known as The Hive LGBT Centre.
Former department store
The project will breath new life into the former Goldbergs department store in Whytescauseway just off High Street, which has lain empty for a number of years.
The 10,000 square foot space, which is spread over two floors, will be transformed into a multi functioning hub including a cafe, recording studios, community meeting rooms, hot desks for hire and an exhibition space in what is the first phase of a long-term project.
Commenting on the news, Stuart Duffy, founder of Pink Saltire, said everyone was excited to be able to launch this final phase of their ambitious plans.
“It’s been a long journey since we took the keys back in July 2020, made even more difficult during the pandemic as trades have been so difficult to get a hold of, but we’re determined to get the doors open this summer,” said Stuart.
“We’re hoping the community will support us raise the money needed to get things finished.
Safe space for LGBT in Fife
“More than £50,000 has already been raised to help make this first phase a welcoming, safe space in Fife for LGBT+ people.
“We’ve had support from The National Lottery Community Fund, Fife Charities Trust and our landlord has also made a contribution to the fundraising – now it’s the final big push.”
Two community organisations have already signed up as residents too, with Transgender Fife and Scene Alba Magazine now based at the facility on Whytescauseway.
It’s also hoped the building will act as a base for a number of community services and programmes, as well as offering a focus during the successful Fife Pride event each year.