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Fife Taskforce allocates £6m funds

Members agree on funds to support workers and repurpose TR site.

The fourth meeting of the Fife Taskforce, co-chaired by Deputy First Minister John Swinney and Leader of Fife Council David Ross, has taken place to agree the detail of the next phase of action that will support economic growth and job creation across Glenrothes and central Fife.

As well as hearing an update on the Tullis Russell administration process and immediate support available for the workforce, detail of the overall direction of the taskforce’s action plan was agreed. This includes support for the workforce, local business growth, community regeneration, business infrastructure, investment, and the future use of the Tullis Russell site.

The taskforce considered detailed proposals and discussed how the £6 million initial Scottish Government funds should be allocated for maximum impact and to complement existing resources partners have made available to support work in the area.

The focus of the discussion was on supporting the workforce and it was noted that of the 403 employees who have been made redundant at Tullis Russell, 143 have secured employment, while 286 have requested training from support agency Opportunities Fife, and of these, 142 people have had their training requests fulfilled. A local campaign has already been launched by Opportunities Fife to encourage those who have been affected to seek training and support.

The taskforce agreed allocations of:

  • Support for the workforce – £1.5 million from additional resources for a training fund to support individuals affected by recent redundancies in the mid-Fife area. £600,000 of this funding has already been released to Fife Council to help with training, while the remaining will be distributed through Opportunities Fife
  • Supporting business growth – £2 million from additional resources for a range of interventions including support for companies in the Tullis Russell supply chain, intensified support for growth businesses, a new business accelerator pilot programme targeting support at selected business to help them with leadership, entrepreneurship and innovation, creating a small business hub and establishing a central Fife business investment fund
  • Community regeneration – £0.25 million from additional resources to support community and town centre projects in Glenrothes and the most affected communities in central Fife
  • Business infrastructure and investment - £2.25 million from additional resources to explore future uses of the Tullis Russell site, including the biomass heat generation and developments at Queensway Industrial Estate and other industrial estates in Glenrothes and Kirkcaldy as well as a long term strategic assessment of the mid-Fife economy

After the meeting co-chairs Mr Swinney and Cllr Ross said:

“We want to make sure that we collectively do everything possible to help those most affected in a rapid, accessible and effective way, and we will make sure this continues to be done. We are confident that the agreed allocation and distribution of the £6 million Scottish Government funding will target the right places and reach the right people.

“While we were all disappointed that the intensive process to find an alternative buyer for Tullis Russell was not successful, we were heartened to hear about the support that has been delivered to the workforce.

“We should like to recognise the efforts not only of the public sector agencies involved but also of the private sector which has also done all it can to help offer jobs and opportunities to those made redundant.

“Our focus is on actions that continue to support people, business and communities affected. The initiatives set out in our Action Plan will help deliver economic growth in Glenrothes and Central Fife. Delivering against these actions is now key for us over the months ahead.”


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