LOCAL campaigner Dave Coleman and Councillors Darren Watt and Dave Dempsey have welcomed the SNP/Labour Council’s proposal to abandon charges at Ferrytoll & Halbeath Park-and-Rides, following strong local opposition to the charges.

A council committee is to consider an arrangement between the local authority and the Stagecoach bus company which would see the charge scrapped.

The Scottish Conservatives were the only group to oppose the extra charges, proposed at £1 a day, to use the Park-and-Ride facilities.

Following the decision of Labour, SNP and Lib Dem councillors to support the new charge, the Scottish Conservatives worked with local groups to make residents’ opposition known at the Council. Cowdenbeath Area Committee voted to accept the charge despite Darren Watt's protests.

Cllr Darren Watt, Cowdenbeath, said: "I am incredibly pleased to say that it appears the £1 daily charge proposals at our park and ride facilities has been scrapped!

“From the very start my Fife Conservative colleagues and I emphasised the financial impact this'll have on commuters and the potential knock on effect it'll have on our roads and infrastructure. We fought this all the way and it looks like our efforts have finally paid off.

“Don't be fooled into thinking a fantastic deal was struck at the eleventh hour because this is nothing more than an embarrassing U-turn by the SNP/Labour administration at Fife Council.

“They failed to effectively work with partner organisations and they refused to listen or acknowledge any of the objections or concerns raised by the public and arrogantly pressed ahead aiming straight for the pockets of commuters".

He added: “This whole proposal has been a complete waste of everyone's time and caused nothing but worry and anxiety for those who rely on the service. Hopefully lessons will be learnt and this will be the last we hear of such ludicrous proposals."

Dave Coleman, from Dalgety Bay, said: “I am really pleased that Labour and the SNP have been forced to scrap this unpopular policy, which would have impacted on our area more than most. The charges would have encouraged parking to spill over into Inverkeithing and other areas nearby, as well as adding costs for many commuters.”

Councillor Dave Dempsey added: “The Conservatives on the Council were the only group who opposed this parking charge, and I’m delighted that we have forced the Council to listen to local residents and scrap this extra charge on Fife commuters."