The Cowdenbeath area is celebrating a £250,000 cash windfall in one of the first initiatives of its kind in Scotland.
“Oor Bit” saw more than 1,400 people vote on their favourite projects in a bid to involve the community in deciding where money should be spent.
Now 14 projects close to people’s hearts will share £250,000.
The project’s driving force, area manager Kevin Sayer, explained funding was made available through Cowdenbeath area committee in partnership with community councils and other local organisations to encourage people to come up with ideas to improve their area.
A steering group was formed and citizens as young as eight were given a say.
In the first phase local people generated more than 150 ideas.
A shortlist of 30 projects were put to the public vote.
Committee chairman Mark Hood said: “This has been a fantastic process where local people have taken control of their own destinies.
“I’m looking forward to seeing all of these projects make a real difference in our local communities and that this project can serve as a blueprint to encourage similar work across Fife.”
The winning projects include:
· Kelty – £30,000 for an outdoor multi-gym, probably in the park in Bath Street;
· Benarty – £5,000 to light up the war memorial, install a seat and flower vase;
· Crossgates – £30,000 for a cycle route to Fordell Firs;
· Crossgates – £25,000 to part fund a multi use games area, perhaps by the bowling green;
· Hill of Beath – £25,000 for a skate park (part funded);
· Hill of Beath – £25,000 to part fund a multi-use games area;
· Cowdenbeath – £10,000 to improve the unsightly access routes to the railway station;
· Cowdenbeath – £10,000 for improvements to the public park to promote its heritage;
· Cowdenbeath -£15,000 for The Line, to clear up the area where the pugs ran to take coal from the mines and tell the history of the town;
· Lumphinnans – £15,000 to upgrade the area around the pond;
· Lumphinnans – £20,000 for a trim trail as the project at the new astro pitches was never finished and no exercise machines were installed;
· Lochgelly – £10,000 for a youth club as it was felt the town needed a place for young people;
· Cardenden – £25,000 for improvements to Wallsgreen Park entrance and lighting;
· Gateways – £5,000 to install things to remind people of the area’s rich seam of mining history.
The £250,000 funding has been made available through an innovative participatory budgeting exercise, with a significant proportion of the cash coming from the local community planning budget.