Burntisland Shows Over for Another Year

Sunday was the final day – the schools go back this week.

The season got off to a bad start with June being a disappointment for the Showmen. Games Day was busy and one of the few days when car parks were full.

Much more rain this year than last year, so no scorched grass. In contrast the soggy Links has suffered some vehicle track damage – which Fife Council is due to remedy. (The grass has already been cut.)

Before the Shows arrived there was the fuss over the new power supply – and how it should be paid for. The standoff between Fife Council and the Community Council continues and may end in court!

There were suggestions in some quarters that without power the Shows wouldn’t show. This may have been fake news.

The Shows have been part of Burntisland for generations, and will be for the foreseeable future. Every year there are murmurs and rumours and various ‘issues’.

Some people in Burntisland wish there were no shows, ever. Some fear that if shows didn’t come ‘the High Street would die’ as summer trade means shops can stay open all year.

Some think the ‘takeover’ of the Links is for too long, also that the way some rides leave early, leaving gaps, is ‘unattractive’.

This year the arrival of the Big Wheel was exciting, but it only stayed a couple of weeks – with a lot of rainy days. This was a real attraction for all the family, it is expected to return next year. The relative lack of rides to attract teenagers gets talked about.

Burntisland Links is one of many assets held as Common Good. These are administered by Fife Council with some input from the Community Council. The Community Development Trust has recently set up a subgroup to look at some ways of improving the Links and beach area.

Last year a meeting was called by the Community Council after Fife Council made arrangements for parking on the Links in the area used by the Highland Games. “Those present almost unanimously wanted no parking on The Links at any time.

This year there has been very little unauthorised parking on the Links, partly because of the large bund (the mound made from the sand dug up when the new cabling was laid). A gate was also installed, the second one has still not arrived.

Every year there are meetings between representatives of the show owners and Fife Council (officials and councillors). Perhaps there should be a meeting (at least once a year) which would also include representatives from other groups, for instance –

Community Council: longstanding interest in the Links generally, but particularly parking, ‘seagull proof’ bins and the state of the toilets and the water playpark.

Burntisland Community Development Trust: this is looking at a wide range of ways of making the Links more attractive (some overlapping with the CC) including plans for the toilet block, shelters, drinking and feet washing water (there is piped water in several places on the Links), more shelter, more sensitive grass cutting regimes and opportunities for planting.

Highland Games: concerns about making sure the Games area is always in good condition.

Live on the Links: aspiration for a covered bandstand and the possibility of more events.

Events Group: currently only organises the bonfire and fireworks – this attracts thousands, in the dark so paths, lighting and hidden holes are some of the concerns.

FAB (Floral Action Burntisland): the group supplies hanging basking at the west end, and has plans to revitalise the rose garden at the east.

Photo 1985 © Ian McCracken

There was at least one other shelter on the Links. Removed when/why? Note also benches and bins.

An example of a modern drinking bottle refiller and feet cleaning fountain.

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