LOCHGELLY Salvation Army celebrated their 120th anniversary with an event in a packed St Serf's Church.

And the evening got off to a great start with local lad Andrew Howe playing Highland Cathedral on the bagpipes.

A former member of the Lochgelly High School Pipe Band – which won the UK Championships last week – he was accompanied by the East Scotland Divisional Youth Band and Chorus.

Now a territorial envoy commanding the corps at Buckhaven, Andrew shared his experience and spiritual journey, paying tribute to the help and guidance he received growing up in the town and how he was greatly influenced by a number of local folk who helped to shape his life.

A varied musical programme was at the heart of the celebrations while the audience was also entertained by Buckhaven Youth Worship Dance Group.

The Salvation Army have been in the town since 1899 and one of the highlights of the night was an award for local Salvationist Miss Sarah (Sadie) Gourdie, who has given an incredible 70 years of service.

The Divisional Commander, Lieutenant Colonel Carol Bailey, presented her with a certificate and flowers, there was also a letter from the territorial commander of the UK.

Sadie, as the oldest soldier, cut the anniversary cake with the youngest junior soldier, Luis Cuming.

Major Mary McDonald said: "Our special guest for the weekend was Major Joy Paxton who comes from Lochgelly.

"Joy was a teacher before she entered the training college in London to train as a Salvation Army officer.

"Her family are well known in the town, her father was a local councillor her uncle was a business man.

"In fact Paxton Crescent in the town is named after her father.

"Because of the report in last week’s paper a number of people turned up to specifically catch up with Joy.

"She was quite overwhelmed and said she wouldn’t have missed this weekend, it was just so special for her."

Mary added: "Messages were also received from a number of former officers who had been stationed here, going back 50 years.

"A couple of Lochgelly folks who are serving in other parts of the country were able to join us for the weekend, some travelling from as far as Essex.

"One of the highlights of the service was the singing of the recently formed choir who sang for the first time.

"Following the programme the ladies of St Serf's did a marvellous job of serving well over 100 people with tea and cakes.

"This gave opportunity for fellowship and catching up."

The Salvation Army were grateful for the use of the church building and on Sunday the service of thanksgiving was led by Joy.