Mark Twain once said: “Action speaks louder than words but not nearly as often.”
No phrase could be more apt when it comes to The Postings Shopping Centre in Kirkcaldy, which is now under new ownership after its plight was the subject of hundreds of column inches and even a five minute segment on prime time evening television.
The interest stemmed from the fact the once thriving shopping mall was put up for auction with a reserve price of just £1 – a tactic which would inevitably lead to a range of parties looking at the prime site while highlighting the tough times town centres are experiencing.
Evergold, a property development, asset management and property maintenance company, snapped up The Postings for £310,000, and their intention is to “reposition and revitalise” the centre for the local community’s benefit.
Fears it would be bulldozed to be replaced by housing were immediately quelled, and new owner Tahir Ali spoke of ambitious plans in the pipeline. His firm is in advanced discussions with various operators for the large unit formerly occupied by Tesco, and talks are ongoing with prospective tenants offering a range of goods and services.
It will be rebranded the ‘Kirkcaldy Centre’ and its future, according to the new owners, is in very good hands.
That is all tremendous news on the face of it but I know not to to immediately stick all your chips on black.
I saw designs more than 20 years ago for an £8 million upgrade of the harbour area which included plans for flats and houses, a 40,000 square foot leisure complex, a superstore, a pub/restaurant, parking for more than 600 cars and a heritage centre.
None of it materialised.
Almost five years after a new £500m neighbourhood – including more than 1,000 homes, a primary school, shops and a community centre – was approved by councillors at Kingslaw, there is still nothing but grassland — and a couple of signs advertising what’s still to come.
This is not talking the town down; no-one would be more delighted than me if we got a new, thriving mall to help draw people back into Kirkcaldy’s heart.
However, no matter how well people can articulate their intentions, talk has no credibility without action to back it up.
Perhaps, for the moment, we should be content with the fact that we finally have something being promised to breathe new life into a prominent part of town but hopefully we are not watching this space for too long.