In Brief

Charlestown, Limekilns and Pattiesmuir Community Council minutes

West Fife Villages
Community Projects Group minutes

Fife Forum Newsletter

Culross Community Council minutes (PDF files)

Saline and Steelend Community Development Trust AGM

Saline and Steelend Community Council matters

Gellet Society (history / heritage society)programme of speakers for 2015/ 16

Oakley and Comrie Community Council minutes

Torryburn and District History Group - Syllabus for 2015/2016

Unpaid Carers information event

Oakley and Comrie Community News (PDF file)

Lastest news from West Fife Rotary Club

Torryburn and Newmills Community Council minutes

Carnock and Gowkhall Community Trust Newsletter
(PDF file)

West Fife & Coastal Villages Community Council Forum

Kincardine History Group meeting dates

Saline and Steelend newsletter (PDF file)

Cairneyhill Community Council minutes

Check out Saline, Steelend and Communities' new website

Blairhall Community Council minutes

Oakley and Comrie Community Council (PDF file)

Cairneyhill Community Council

Saline Environmental Group

The newly formed Saline
and District Heritage Society
have set up their own website.

Click here to visit the site




Church News

Culross and Torryburn Parish Church serving the villages of Culross, High and Low Valleyfield, Newmills, Torryburn, Shiresmill and Blairhall.

Services on 18th September to be held in High Valleyfield Church at 9.45 am followed by refreshments, and in Culross Abbey at 11am. Both services will be led by The Worship Team.

Weekly Tuesday coffee morning in High Valleyfield Church 10am – 12pm, where all are welcome.

The Kids Club has restarted in High Valleyfield Church on Thursday evenings – contact Rae Hunter on 881574 for details.

A ‘Thrift Shop’ will be open in High Valleyfield Church between 11am – 3pm each day until Saturday 17th Sept. Come along and have a ‘rake through’ a wide range of clothing/bric-a-brac and many other interesting and useful items, whilst enjoying a cup of tea and a scone, also soup between 12 – 1.30pm. All proceeds to Church funds.
The Abbey Tea Room (adjacent to Culross Abbey Manse) is open Tuesday – Sundays inclusive 11am – 4pm. Pop in and enjoy home made soup, cakes and a selection of leaf teas in a pleasant historic environment, all at reasonable prices. Volunteer helpers are still required – contact Rae in the Tea Room or ‘phone 881574.

An Extraordinary Meeting of the Kirk Session will take place in High Valleyfield Church on Tuesday 20th September at 7pm.

Future dates for your diary:
Harvest Thanksgiving – Services in both churches on Sunday 16th October. We have been asked to donate suitable products to the local Food Bank- more details in due course.
Harvest Gathering – to be held in Blair Castle on Friday 11th November 7pm – 11pm. Similar to last year’s successful and much enjoyed event, there will be dancing/musical entertainment and a buffet meal. No charge, however, donations to help with the costs will be appreciated. Invitations and further details will be distributed in due course.

John Robert Crane BEM

John's death marks the end of an era of dedicated service to the West Fife Villages community. Even in the latter stages of his illness he was anxious that his work could carry on. He also prepared notes for his funeral and these follow. Friends have filled in gaps but the words are essentially John's.

“John was born illegitimately in 1942 in Sheerness, Kent. He was adopted into a loving family and he said that was one of the best things that ever happened to him. John’s father worked for the Admiralty and the family moved to various parts of the country, including Almond Bank, Perth.

Whilst working in Portsmouth, John was on detached duty in Aultbea, a small village on the west coast of Scotland. He met Marie who was on holiday. They were married in 1972 and John took up a post in Greenock where their daughter, Fiona, was born. This was followed by a three year appointment in Barrow-in-Furness and eventually, on request, a transfer to Rosyth in 1977. Their second daughter, Morag, was born a year later.


Local impact in Airspace Change Programme

Edinburgh Airport has announced an Airspace Change Programme.

This programme involves a two stage consultation. The initial consultation begins today, 6 June, at midday and runs until 23:59 on 12 September 2016.

During the initial consultation, we’re asking for views on the potential impact of altering flight paths above Edinburgh. This feedback is gathered during a 14 week process.


Woodlands 'highly commended'

West Fife Woodlands were Highly Commended in the 2016 Scottish Finest Woods Awards ‘Community Woodland’ competition for promoting Healthy Lifestyles, on Friday 24 June at the Royal Highland Show.

The Scotland’s Finest Woods Awards recognises, celebrates and commends the dedication and commitment to the creation and management of Scotland’s finest woods.


Longannet Power Station closes

By John Le Marie

Longannet Power Station formally closed on 31st March after ceasing to output to the grid on Thursday 24th March. It is the last of the coal-fired power stations to close in Scotland.

It first began generating electricity in 1970 and once fully commissioned, was the largest coal-fired station in Europe. Prior to its closure it was the third largest, after Belchat? in Poland and Drax in England. However with its installed generating capacity of 2,400 megawatts it remained the highest of any power station in Scotland.


Valleyfield Estate Community Orchard
- March 2016 Update

Did you know that it only takes five trees to make an orchard? We have many more than that here!

In February, over 250 children from 7 schools in Fife helped to transform this space into an orchard for wildlife and people to enjoy.

If you walk here regularly you may have recently met children and teachers from Torryburn, Saline, Inzievar, St Serfs, Tulliallan, Culross or Holy Name Primary Schools.


Bennet House: A Study House in Culross

The National Trust for Scotland will be working on an innovative project in Culross this summer, restoring an historic building and in the process helping people find out how conservation skills are put into practice.

The building in question is Bennet House, a house which sits directly opposite The Bessie Bar Hall in Culross and has its origins in the late 16th/early 17th centuries.

Bennet House has been unoccupied for around 20 years and the damaging effects of Scottish weather, combined with a lack of regular maintenance and upkeep, have taken their toll on the building.


'Friends of Bandrum'

Most people will know of Bandrum Care Home, tucked away in the woods at Cowstrandburn, but how many appreciate that with 120 staff it is far and away our largest employer, or are aware of the considerable investment made in recent years to upgrade and extend the range of accommodation available for more than 80 residents from across the age range and with a wide variety of care needs?


Fife Council Planning /Community Council Focus Group

Back in August, and in response to concerns raised by Saline and Steelend Community Council and many other groups about the functioning of the planning department, Fife Council arranged an ‘engagement event’ to listen to the criticisms that people have.

The meeting was attended by representatives of community councils from across Fife but interestingly the majority were from central and west Fife.


Calling all local businesses

Saline and Steelend Community Council heard a presentation by the promoters of the proposed Muirmealing Solar Farm and the lack of objections to it.

Consequently, there is a good chance that approval will be given. It also noted that there is a similar applications near Blairhall while there is another in the pipeline near Comrie Colliery.


Funding opportunities

A Tesco grant funding scheme for community greenspace projects has been launched.

The scheme is being administered by Groundwork and Greenspace Scotland north of the border and opened for applications month.

Eligible projects include pocket parks, sports facilities, woodland walks and community gardens. There will be two funding rounds per year for the next three years with grants of between £8,000 and £12,000 available to successful applicants. The first application round closes at 12 noon on Friday 27th November 2015.

Solar farms for West Fife Villages?

Given the past summer, people would be justified in thinking the last place for solar technology would be the West Fife Villages. Well, they're wrong.

Applications have been submitted to Fife Council for the erection of a 5Mw solar farms on Muirmealing Farm, Saline and at Grange, Blairhall.


Have your say

Chair of Saline and Steelend Community Council, David Chisholm, recently attended a meeting with Planners to discuss community councils' concerns about service delivery.

He reported back that it was relatively poorly attended but was notable for the large representation from the West Fife Villages. They argued for the appointment of a dedicated Liaison Officer and this is to be examined. In the meantime, David has agreed to join a working party to look at ways of improving relations between the planners and our communities.


Fife Leader funding

“Leader” is a European grant scheme administered by Fife Council that can give awards to projects that address deficiencies in rural communities such as the West Fife Villages. Details of what will be eligible are not yet available but are likely to include works relevant to us.

The council's funding team has a database of community groups throughout Fife and keeps them up to date on funding opportunities. Funding updates will be posted as they become available but, if your group wants to be included on the council's circulation list, contact Patricia Galfskiy (

Strategic Plan review

NHS Fife and Fife Council have launched a consultation to seek the public’s view on the Strategic Plan for Fife (2016-19).

Running from 7 October 2015 until the 6 January 2016 the draft Strategic Plan sets out a vision for the transformation of health and social care over the next four years. This includes widening the skills of teams, changing the way we commission services, strengthening partnerships and leveraging new technology.


Saline’s David Quinney MBE 1945-2015

It came as a shock for Dave’s friends and neighbours when we learnt of his sudden death from pneumonia on 18 September.



Book review

'The Tyme of Thair Decease' - Early Wills from Saline Parish

Compiled, Transcribed & Notated by S.E. Murray

This is a remarkable book that provides us with a window into the life of Saline folk during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Susan Murray has undertaken an amazing amount of research to present us with this insight into the history of our parish and the book will be of considerable assistance to those undertaking local family research.


Welcome Home to Dunfermline

Whatever your views on the repatriation of the Elgin Marbles, it is a fact that countless historical artefacts and manuscripts are located outside their countries of origin. Acquired by either fair means or foul, very few find their way back home.



If it ain't broke, don't fix it - Kelty and Saline to Join?

by John Crane

The Local Government Boundary Commission for Scotland has put forward proposals that would reduce the number of councillors the county has by six, and would also change the boundaries of certain wards.

One of the proposed changes takes the Saline and Steelend community council area out of the West Fife & Coastal villages ward, and places it in a ward with Kelty and Ballingry. This would split Saline and Steelend from our close village neighbour, Oakley, located only a couple of miles south of Saline.


Official opening of woodland path

A formal opening ceremony of the Blairhall to Balgownie Woodland Path took place recently, with the ribbon cutting taking place at the newly erected bridge over Grange Burn.

Attending were representatives of Fife Council, local MSP Cara Hilton, MP Thomas Docherty and other representatives from West Fife Woodlands, Valleyfield Heritage Project Group, Forestry Commission Scotland, Paths for All, ScotWays and the Scottish Ramblers Association. In addition, there was a good attendance by members of the local community.


Use it or lose it - Saline Golf Club

An extremely well attended open meeting was held on Monday evening, 16 June in Saline Golf Club.

The Club Committee had called the meeting in order to bring the club's financial situation to the attention of members.

The Committee had called on the services of a professional auditor who had analysed the clubs statement of accounts that had been compiled by Alan Monk, the club's treasurer.