MID SCOTLAND and Fife Green MSP Mark Ruskell says diversifying industry at Rosyth Dockyard could provide jobs for generations of West Fifers.

In a recent Holyrood debate on Ministry of Defence closures across Scotland, which included considerations of the proposed closure of HMS Caledonia, Mr Ruskell said there is need to ensure that the negative impacts of closures are mitigated and that positive regeneration opportunities are realised.

He commented: "I can fully understand why the end of a 100-year relationship with the MoD will be daunting for the community in Rosyth, but the dockyards are a hugely under-utilised facility which has the capacity to contribute so much more to the economy of central Scotland if we broaden our horizons.

"Building and maintenance of commercial ferries, the development of the freight port and reintroduction of passenger ferries, and the creation of facilities for use in North Sea decommissioning, all have the potential to provide livelihoods at Rosyth for generations to come.

"The freeing up of the land and assets at HMS Caledonia can also help meet the very real needs of the growing community in Rosyth too. It's time we start to build a strategy that makes the best use of these assets whilst fulfiling the potential of these dockyards as Scotland's gateway to Europe."