FIFE Sports and Leisure Trust have announced changes to its crèche services after speculation that they were set to close earlier this year.

The Press reported in February the concerns of families who feared the facilities at Carnegie and Duloch leisure centres would close as the trust carried out a review.

However, Wendy Watson, chief operating officer, confirmed this week that changes will now be made which will see both centres provide early learning and childcare places in order to help the Scottish Government achieve their targets, working in partnership with Fife Council’s education and children’s services.

She said: “Demand for our crèche services has been steadily decreasing over a number of years – despite our efforts to promote the service; it was no longer commercially viable for the trust at a time when budget savings are a priority in order to deliver sustainable services for all our customers.

“However, we are very pleased to be announcing the transfer of our facilities to Fife Council’s education and children’s services directorate as they are ideally suited to delivering early learning and childcare, thereby helping deliver the Scottish Government’s target of offering increased, free entitlement of early years childcare by 2020.”

While services will be retained at Carnegie and Duloch leisure centres, the crèche at Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes is set to close due to lack of demand.

Councillor Fay Sinclair, convener of the education and children’s services committee, added: “We have a mounting body of evidence that shows investment in early years plays a very important part in closing the gap and stopping the cycle of deprivation.

“By increasing the number of locations where we offer early learning and childcare places gives parents flexibility and access to high-quality care for their children, in their local area, in a way that best suits their family.”

The trust’s current crèche service will close on Friday, June 29 and further information and timescales on delivery of Fife Council childcare from trust facilities will be announced on