A CAMPAIGN has been launched to save the former Inverkeithing Primary School from demolition.

Despite Fife Council planners recommending that the listed building shouldn’t be flattened, members of the West Planning Committee disagreed and backed the developer’s bid to knock it down.

Local resident Greg Ward, 41, started a petition that he hopes will stop the historic property from disappearing from Inverkeithing’s landscape. The IT worker said: “I was incensed when I saw the decision the committee had made. I could see that this was going to happen. The building has just been neglected for 10 years by the owners.

“Unfortunately, I have seen similar things happen in other places to beautiful buildings.”

Historic Environment Scotland (HES) were consulted on the planning application because of the listed building status and objected to the demolition.

As a result, it is now in the hands of the Scottish Government to decide the future of the building, with a final decision expected within two months.

Gary lives on Roods Road, just 400 yards from the old school, and walks past it every day.

“I understand the economics have to add up for developers and it may be easier to knock it down,” he said. “But just because it’s easier, doesn’t mean it’s right. I went to school there and it’s a lovely building. Other similar buildings have been converted into flats so it’s not impossible.”

Allanwater Developments Ltd want to build 28 affordable homes at Roods Road and state that demolition of the category C-listed building is the only way to make housebuilding viable.

Committee convenor Alice McGarry had said the building was “dragging” down Inverkeithing and the time had come to move forward.

“There is no interest and the developers have tried to market it for conversion,” she said. “I do not normally vote against the recommendation of the planning officers, but I am not sure why residents should have to wait any longer. Inverkeithing has a need for affordable housing.”

Locals claim the building is attracting rats and that it’s a target for anti-social behaviour but Greg said: “I haven’t noticed any trouble there even though teenagers use the site as a short cut.

“The stone work looks fine to me but it’s just a headache for the developers. We lost Kings Road Primary School (in Rosyth) which is another example of this type of building and we shouldn’t lose anymore.

“I am all for getting something done but not at the expense of the school being knocked down. Once we get rid of it we can’t change our minds.”

You can find the petition at change.org/p/fife-council-stop-the-demolition-of-inverkeithing-primary-school