Calendar‎ > ‎E-Bulletin‎ > ‎

Issue 37 May 2015

posted 5 May 2015, 20:33 by Ian Holmes-Lewis   [ updated 10 Sep 2017, 12:06 ]
Local government: who do you think should pay for it and how?

The way local government is funded is going to change, this will mean changes in the taxes and how they're raised. If you have an opinion about this, now is your chance to have a say.  Seán Wixted, Assistant Clerk for the Local Government and Regeneration Committee has written as follows (follow the links in the article to participate):

The Commission on Local Tax Reform has launched an online survey seeking the views of interested individuals on how local government should be funded in the future.

The Commission has also issued a call for written evidence from any interested individuals, groups or organisations who wish to provide their views on how local government services should be funded. The closing date for making a written submission to the Commission is Monday 22 June 2015.

We encourage you to look at the Commission's website and provide them with your views on how local government services should be funded in the future.

We also encourage you to circulate information about the commission as widely as possible in your community, or amongst your stakeholder group. This is your opportunity to have your say on how local government services are funded and how local taxation should operate in Scotland.

Please DO NOT respond to this email and DO NOT send any submissions us. We are not part of the Commission’s work. This email is simply to bring the work of the Commission to your attention.

Send your written submissions directly to the Commission by emailing: or by post to: The Commission on Local Tax Reform, Verity House, 19 Haymarket Yards, Edinburgh, EH12 5BH.

Seán Wixted
Assistant Clerk
Local Government and Regeneration Committee


We have been working hard to restore the old graveyard in Bridge Street, and to celebrate this, we are having an official opening of the graveyard on Saturday 27 June, starting at 11am. There will then be guided tours of the graveyard at approximately 11.30am, 12.30pm and 1.30pm. Teas and coffees will be available in the Church Hall from 11.30am and there will be entertainment provided by several local groups in the Church grounds. All money raised will be for the benefit of local groups as our open day is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. More details will be in the June Bulletin.

On the weekend of 18-19 April the Heritage Society had a very busy weekend. First, we held a tea dance on the afternoon of Saturday 18 April in the Golf Club, with music provided by Inverkeithing Community Big Band. Angela provided a delicious spread of sandwiches, cakes, tea and coffee and everyone enjoyed the music from the era of big bands. A total of £64 was received in donations for the Heritage Society. Thanks go to everyone for helping to make the afternoon such a success.
            the completed trench
In addition, over the weekend you may have noticed some strange goings on in the old graveyard. A team from Edinburgh Archaeological Society were there to carry out a small excavation, a follow up from the survey they did back in the summer of 2013. They were looking for the remains of an early Christian church. It really was like Time Team and some of us were fortunate enough to be allowed to help. A couple of pieces of 18th Century pottery were found along with some small pieces of coal. A survey was also carried out of the mysterious rectangle which has appeared at the bottom of the graveyard. Douglas Spiers, Fife Council Archaeologist, will interpret all the data and we will publish the results at a later date; if they are known by the time of our open day, we will be delighted to explain them to visitors during the guided tour.
We also hope to display the results on an information board sometime next year to complement the two already installed.


The Churchyard correspondent writes:- At present there is being erected a stately monument in the old churchyard to the memory of the late Robert Henderson, Esq. of Kirkland. We think his trustees have acted very wisely in keeping up the memory of such a gentleman, as he in his settlement bequeathed nearly £500 per annum to the deserving poor in the parish, which is now being felt as a great help to not a few. What is wanting now is a new churchyard, which the Parochial Board have had in hands for years; but every year seems to make matters worse. In fact, the state of affairs the other day in the Churchyard was, to say the least of it, disgraceful—some of the coffins of departed friends being exposed in such a way for whole day and night to the mercy of stray dogs, &c. We hope soon to see this old churchyard, which is now densely crowded, closed entirely to the public, and that a nice cemetery at once be begun, so that the Paradise of Fife may not be at least a century back in this respect.


Don’t forget the Glen Clear up on Saturday 23 May, meeting at 10am at the Glen entrance! Sweets and refreshments will be provided for both children and adults.

The Editor reserves the right to refuse, edit or factually correct all items submitted for publication. All views expressed in this Bulletin are purely those of the author of the item concerned and are not necessarily those of the Editor or of the Communications Group as a whole. 


As a follow on from our recent recruitment drive, we have enrolled three Beavers, one Cub and one Explorer.

All sections are back and running a full programme of activities after a three week break over Easter. The Beavers have just completed their Disability Awareness Activity Badge. They are looking forward to embarking on some outdoor activities now that the weather is improving. The Cubs have now started work on their Global Challenge Award, learning about another country, an international charity and protecting the environment. Shortly the Scouts will complete their final practice camp for the District Camping Competition at the end of May. We wish them well at this competition. 
Later this month two of the Scouts will team up with the Explorers for an expedition of two days hiking with an overnight camp as part of their Chief Scout's Gold Award.

Peter Philp, Group Scout Leader

01383 852612 


Saline Rainbows have reopened and are on Thursday evenings, 5.00pm-6.00pm. We have ten girls aged five and six which means that we are full at the moment. However, there is a waiting list so if you want to put names down, call on 853080.

It's that time of year again and the Brownies are off to Pack Holiday on Friday. This time we are venturing in to Perthshire to Newbiggin Outdoor Centre, a great place near Cupar Angus. Eighteen Brownies are attending so it should be lots of fun - and sleepless nights!

Jane Coates, Wise Owl 

All contributions for inclusion in the Bulletin are welcome and should be submitted to Jacquie Clapperton on 

or by telephoning 852367. 


A reasonably well attended April meeting discussed several important issues.

NHS Presentation

Alistair Lawson, NHS Fife’s new Health Ambassador, gave an interesting presentation on improvements that are being made. He highlighted the key issues of an aging population and shortage of doctors. He also referred to new initiatives that made better use of pharmacists and nurses, and better information for the community. He advised that 101 new nurses were currently being recruited. Several of those present praised the treatment that they had had in Queen Margaret while the Minor Injuries Unit could deal with many cases that would otherwise go to Victoria Hospital.

That Smell

The waste at West Craighouse Farm has finally been dealt with but some still complain about a strong smell last week. The farmer had complained about some people overreacting, which had been firmly rebutted by the chair.

Speed Limits

David Storey reported that a petition has been completed by Upper Steelend residents and will be sent to Fife Council. The Community Council agreed to send a letter of support. Some felt that many drivers would continue to speed shown by the number already speeding through Steelend and Saline. It was suggested that village entrance signs like those at Cowstrandburn could help and a request will be sent to Fife Council.

Boundary Commission Proposals

Many residents will have read John Crane’s articles in the Press and Courier that highlights the proposal that Saline and Steelend should leave the West Fife Villages ward and be linked with Kelty and Ballingry. This was discussed at the last Community Council meeting and those present could see no logic behind the proposals especially as the Commission stresses the importance of community links. The Boundary Commission proposes to take Saline and Steelend from the West Fife Villages to The Lochs ward as part of a mission to achieve six less councillors in Fife. Once again a central body is basing proposals on figures and convenience for them rather than on the people who will be affected.

The Community Council’s view is that we have strong links with Oakley and our other West Fife Villages for most aspects such as family and friends, public transport, council facilities and, most importantly, health. Another important aspect is accessibility to councillors and council services. We will no doubt be assured that there will no day to day change but where have we heard that one before? The current position is that Fife Council has been asked to comment, following which the Boundary Commission will formally seek communities’ views. The Community Council has made its opposition clear to our elected members. This is an important issue and it is vital that people make their views clear to the Community Council. If this progresses to a formal consultation, the Community Council will be active but, in the meantime, please feed back your views to the Community Council. 

You could also make your views known by writing to Steve Grimmond, Chief Executive, Fife House, North Street, Glenrothes, KY7 5LT and toRonnie Hinds, Boundary Commission for Scotland, 91 Haymarket Terrace, Edinburgh, EH12 5HD.


People who have read Ian Holmes-Lewis’s report on the meeting with Ineos must have concerns about impact on this area while we are also faced Underground Coal Gasification proposals. Cllr Bobby Clelland has written to Fergus Ewing MSP seeking clarification of the Scottish Government’s position but has yet to receive a response.


David Chisholm reported on dialogue with Fife Council, Allanwater and Kingdom Housing Association on the Oakley Road sites. The Allanwater applications will be going to committee but it is unclear whether the concerns expressed by the Community Council and objectors have been addressed. Fife Council’s requirement for funds to be made available for art works was felt to be better handled within the community given local interest in Art and the available talent. Allanwater has agreed to attend a meeting to address the concerns already voiced and similar issues.

Kingdom Housing Association has indicated that it hopes to start work this year and the first to be built will be Mid Market Rent homes on the Allanwater site. This is a welcome response to pressure from the Community Council following the need identified by individuals.


David Chisholm advised on e-mails regarding the proposed West Craighouse Farm turbine. The applicants could not understand why people thought that the test mast marked the proposed location. It seems that the current position is the only one not affected by constraints. The planning application has been 'deemed refused' by Fife Council and has gone to the Scottish Government on appeal. Morag Aitken reported that the developer was looking to erect two additional taller turbines at Killernie Farm. There is support within Steelend for one but, if an application for another two is submitted, Steelend residents will have to be consulted again.

Buses/Community Transport

Beth Shaw and Jean Alexander have been active in tackling the consequences of the recent timetable changes. They reported on her conversations with Fife Council who are looking at the West Fife Villages as a whole, which they see as a bigger issue. Efforts to arrange a meeting with Stagecoach are continuing. Discussions with RVS into the provision of a community taxi service for over 55s without access to cars or public transport suggested potential to extend to this area dependent on recruitment of volunteer drivers. 


The Family Beetle Drive held on 24 April was not as well attended as hoped but the participants of all ages had great fun and thoroughly enjoyed the evening.

Christian Aid Week 10-16 May

During this 70th Anniversary year of Christian Aid, in order to raise awareness of the vital work still needed, supporters are being challenged to be sponsored to climb the 70 Munros in Scotland during May. The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, The Rt Rev John Chalmers, has taken up the challenge and, along with Rachel Hutcheson (Moderator of the National Christian Youth Assembly), will be climbing Ben Lomond on Saturday 2 May. The most recent call on Christian Aid's help has been the Nepal Earthquake Appeal and it has been agreed that all money raised by the Moderator's Munro Challenge will go to that appeal. Donations can be made online at https://70 or through the Church of Scotland Offices at 121 George St, Edinburgh.

Christian Aid Day in Saline

Wednesday 13 May, Church Hall, 10.00am-2.00pm
Refreshments/Cake & Candy/Plants/Bric-a-Brac/Books for sale
Donations of all kinds very welcome
(Further information from Janette McNaught on 852270) 

Craft Fair 

Saturday 16 May, Church Hall, 10.00am-4.00pm. 
Variety of local craft work on sale or to order. 
Light refreshments available throughout the day.

Don’t forget – if you have things you want to promote on the community website, contact Ian Holmes-Lewis on 


Please note that classes have now stopped for the Summer and will restart in September, date to be announced. 


The Exhibition Committee met on 28 April in order to fine tune the arrangements for the exhibition that will be held over the weekend of 9-10 May. This will the ninth time that Saline has hosted this unique exhibition that has, in the past, attracted more than 400 visitors.

Marylla Ferguson, the new Exhibition Manager, is arranging to collect exhibits from the twelve West Fife Villages’ primary schools and every pupil who contributes a work of art will be awarded a personal Certificate of Merit.

Concerning exhibits of paintings and photographs from adults, we have an open door policy and exhibitors are just required to bring them along to the Saline Community Centre between 2 pm and 8 pm on Friday 8 May. There are no charges or forms to fill out and if an artwork is put up for sale we do not charge commission. For further details, please ring Marylla on 851868.

The Exhibition is open to the public 10am-4.30pm on Saturday and Sunday. Entry is free and light refreshments and lunches are available, courtesy of the ladies of the Church Guild. There are good car parking facilities at the Community Centre and there is good access for wheelchairs.

Even if you do not submit an exhibit, please support this community event by visiting the Community Centre over this weekend and see what local artists and photographers can achieve and to view the artwork of the pupils from Saline Primary School and all the other primary schools from the West Fife Villages. 


After a four year break we are opening our garden again on Sunday 24 May under Scotland’s Garden Scheme. Kirklands was built in 1832 and we have lived here for 38 years. For most of that time we have been developing our garden and it’s still a work in progress! We have a terraced walled garden with raised beds and fruit trees, a woodland garden full of bluebells with rhododendrons, rockery, herbaceous borders and a bog garden. A bridge across the burn connects to Saline Glen and the woodland walk.

The garden will be open from 2pm to 5pm. There will be a plant stall and cream teas. Parking is in the bus turning circle, although limited disabled parking is available at Kirklands. Entrance is £4.00.

60% goes to Scotland’s Garden Scheme charities: Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres, The Queen’s Nursing Institute Scotland, The Gardens Fund of the National Trust for Scotland and Perennial. 40% goes to our nominated charity which this year is Operation Ollie – Let’s Get Him Walking. Ollie, our nephew’s son, has cerebral palsy and cannot walk. We are helping to raise the £50,000 for an operation in St Louis, USA by Dr Park, followed by intensive physiotherapy in USA and UK. A huge number of friends and family have undertaken long distance cycle rides, marathons and numerous other events. We have nearly reached the target and just need a last ‘push’.


One of our local guest houses, Cherry Tree Lodge, was featured in Wednesday’s Courier this past week having been awarded Gold from the Green Tourism Business Scheme for their green credentials.
Shortly after purchasing in October 2011,owners Mark and Till opened it as an alternative guest house, wanting to create a homely space for people to enjoy well-being, art and nature – a place where they can just “be”. 


This month’s bulletin has an important addition for all.
The annual show schedule is a free pull-out and lists all the classes for this year’s show. There is literally something for everyone – it’s not just flowers and vegetables. Spare a few minutes to look through the other classes: baking ,making, taking (pictures) etc. Then decide what will YOU enter this year. It’s about the taking part and - if you wish - showing off your talents. If you have never taken part before then why not enter something this year or help your children enter something? We will also put this schedule up on the community website.

Thanks, and see you in September.
Gareth Turner – Society Chairman 


There can be no doubt that we have an excellent web site and much credit must go to Ian Holmes-Lewis for keeping it up to date. 
However, at the last Community Council meeting it was noted that many groups’ sections were out of date (including the Community Council’s!!!!). Updating the Community Council’s pages is a commitment for Ian but responsibility for the rest falls to the individual groups. 
Quite frankly, there is no point in holding inaccurate information but, more importantly, these pages are an excellent way to promote your groups and recruit more members. The information is also transferred to the Welcome Pack for new residents so accuracy is again important. It is accepted that many of us are not particularly confident in our computer literacy. If you are one of these and need help, contact Ian. He’s very helpful!


The Community Council has been contacted by Julie Gracie from The National Confidential Forum with a view to raising awareness of its role. The National Confidential Forum is an independent body set up to help Scots who spent time in institutional care as children to have their experiences heard and acknowledged. Participants’ testimonies will help the Forum understand what happened to children in the past and show what can be done to make things easier to make things safer for children in care, today and in the future. For further information see the Saline and Steelend web site or


Following approaches from several residents, the Community Council has asked the Community Development Trust to investigate the possible acquisition of Saline Glen and Steelend Community Centre. Both of these projects are indentified as priorities in the Community Action Plan published in 2011.

The possibility of acquiring Saline Glen was considered by Saline Environmental Group several years ago but was not considered viable. However, the owners are still willing to sell the land to the community and discussions with the Scottish Land Fund suggest that the risks and liabilities might not be as great as previously thought. Hundreds of community-owned woodlands have been created in other parts of Scotland. A meeting with SLF to discuss the project is being arranged.

The Community Development Trust registered an interest in acquiring Steelend Community Centre with Fife Council last year. The Scottish Land Fund have indicated that they would consider providing funding but any proposal would have to have a robust business plan and be financially sustainable. They have suggested that the Community Development Trust apply to the Big Lottery for Investing in Ideas funding for a consultant who could assist with carrying out an options appraisal and the preparation of a business plan. Uses already suggested for the building include a small shop, cafe, and drop-in centre.

If you have ideas or comments about either of these projects email 


A meeting is being arranged for those people who regularly walk in the countryside around our villages to review the existing paths networks and consider what improvements need to be made. The Community Development Trust has funding to purchase strimmers and other equipment to maintain the paths and create new routes once agreement is reached with landowners. If you are interested in attending this meeting email

Forthcoming Meetings & Events: 

Steelend Miners’ Club 
Sambangra Drumming Group, Tuesdays, 7.00pm-8.30pm, £2 
Zumba: Mondays, 7.00pm-8.00pm 
Zumba Toning: Wednesdays, 7.00pm-7.45pm
Curry Night, Saturday 23 May, £10
Marlyn Child-Duncan, Friday 29 May, £4
Car Boot/Table & BBQ, Sunday 31 May, £5

Saline Golf Club
First Saturday of each month: Family Night, 5-7pm
Tuesdays: Bingo Night, 7.30pm
Thursdays: Quiz Night, 8.30pm, entry £1/person
Sky TV and free wi-fi. Associate membership £10 per annum, £4 concessions
Q’zine Catering: also available for all functions.

Every Thursday 5.00pm-6.00pm
Saline Church Hall

Every Thursday 6.00pm-7.30pm
Saline Church Hall

116th Fife Scout Group
Beaver Colony
Every Friday, 6.00pm-7.30pm

Cub Pack
Every Thursday, 6.30pm-8.00pm

Scout Troop
Every Thursday, 7.30pm-9.00pm

Explorer Unit
Every Thursday, 7.30pm-9.00pm
Carnock Community Centre, Camps Road, Carnock. Open to both boys & girls

Highland Dancing Classes
Tuesdays 4.00pm-5.00pm
Thursdays 6.30pm-8.00pm
Saline Church Session Room

Adult Badminton
Mondays 7.45pm
Wednesday 1.30pm and 7.30pm
Saline Community Centre

Saline Smilers (Toddler Group)
Tuesdays 9.30am-11.30am during school terms
Saline Community Centre

Craft and Chatter
Thursdays 10.00am-12.00noon
Last Friday of month 7.00pm-9.00pm
Shieldbank Coffee Shop

Sambangra Drumming Group
Tuesdays, 7.00pm-8.30pm, £2
Steelend Club

Line Dance Classes
Monday 10.00am - 11.00am
Friday 10.00am - 11.00am
Saline Community Centre

Afternoon Craft Group
Every second Tuesday from 17 February
2pm-4pm, Saline Church Hall

Saline & District Heritage Society
Origins of Names of Towns and Villages
Roy Marsdon
Wednesday 28 May
7.00 for 7.30pm, Saline Church Hall

This Community Bulletin is produced by Saline and Steelend Communications Group