THE convener of Cowdenbeath Area Committee paid tribute to the local community for the way that everyone has pulled together and 'gone that extra mile' in what has been an unusual and difficult time.

Councillor Linda Erskine chaired the first meeting of the committee, which brings local government to the Cowdenbeath-Lochgelly area, since January, due to the coronavirus crisis.

And due to the current situation it was the first ever virtual meeting of the group of councillors who represent Wards 7 and 8 on Fife Council.

On Wednesday Ms Erskine, who represents Ward 8, Lochgelly, Benarty and Cardenden, opened the meeting by commenting on the 'amazing work' done by voluntary groups, care staff, teachers, community learning and development staff, members of the public and also local councillors since the start of the pandemic.

The convener commented: "It really has been the strangest of times starting way back in March with the start of the lockdown.

"The work of the teachers in preparing the children to learn at home when the schools were closed was the start of a whole range of unbelievable work that has gone on in this area over a period of six months.

"We are indebted to our teaching staff for what they did and are now doing back at school.

"However, as the lockdown continued all parts of the community got involved. Volunteers from every village and town played their part and we had some remarkable work down helping people in a very difficult time.

"Our Community Learning and Development staff did work way beyond their remit and there were so many people in each of our communities who stepped up to the plate.

"Our councillors too got involved in helping out in a great many ways and the entire community rallied around and showed unbelievable resilience in a most difficult time."

Councillor Erskine added: "I would like to say a personal thanks to everyone who has played such a tremendous role in making lives of people in the area that bit better.

"Our local staff did superbly well and I was proud to see the way everyone has responded to this very difficult time."