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Celebration after second major funding boost for Leven park project

The park already has allotments and hosts an annual festival
The park already has allotments and hosts an annual festival

The group behind the regeneration of Silverburn Park in Leven are celebrating after securing their second funding award in less than a week.

Award-winning mental health and employment charity Fife Employment Access Trust (Feat) has been granted £374,600 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund for the next stage of the development.

The organisation, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, plans to renovate the park’s B-listed former flax mill into a hub of commercial and community activities, including a hostel, café and community space.

The lottery grant follows a £3,000 award from the Coalfield Regeneration Trust to help get the wheels turning on Feat’s On Yer Bike cycle hire initiative.

Duncan Mitchell, the charity’s general manager, said the funding was very welcome.

“It’s been a long road to get to this point and I have to thank Fife Council and particularly current and previous members of the Levenmouth area committee who gave us the opportunity to lease the park and hopefully spark new life into the site with wider benefits for the local community,” he said.

The council marketed Silverburn as a development opportunity in 2012 in the hope of securing its regeneration.

The approach also aimed to safeguard public access, as well as the park’s natural and historical value.

Since then, a wealth of activity has seen feasibility studies, community consultations and detailed designs drawn up.

Duncan added: “The funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund will now enable us to focus on securing the remainder of the funding needed to complete the construction phase of the project and finalise the designs for the renovation of the mill.

“The funding will also support Feat to ensure that meaningful training, volunteering, work experience and employment opportunities are available to their core client group and the surrounding community.”

Feat will work with the council and Fife Historic Buildings Trust on the next stage of the project.

SNP councillor Ken Caldwell, convener of Levenmouth area committee, hailed the funding as great news for the area.

“We’re in full support of Feat and are working closely with them on redevelopment plans for Silverburn Park,” he said.

“We want Silverburn to be an asset for the community, somewhere everyone can enjoy.”

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