FINDING the money to keep Dunfermline safe and prosperous is key after the decision to get rid of the Business Improvement District (BID) company.

Dunfermline Delivers put on high-profile events including the fireworks and Christmas lights switch-on, and took part in night-time safety measures that have contributed to a drop in violent crime.

While Fife Council will still provide money, town centre businesses will no longer pay a levy which will leave a huge funding gap and no BID company to run the big events and organise all the other initiatives they're involved in.

Talks began on Monday to look at alternatives and Councillor Helen Law, convener of the City of Dunfermline area committee, said: "Everyone is trying very hard to find a way forward.

"I can't say what that will be but there is a lot of goodwill towards trying to keep the Dunfermline Delivers team together.

"Obviously that will depend on funding and there are a number of conversations going on to see how that would work.

"As I said last week, it'd be a real disaster if we can't keep them together in some shape or form."

Dunfermline and West Fife MP, Douglas Chapman, said: "I am confident a coherent Plan B can be worked out – but it still needs the support of businesses, particularly larger ones.

"It really is time for us all to put our shoulder to the wheel and use the disappointment of the vote to spur us on to find something that’s better structured than the BID model."

Last week, Dunfermline Delivers confirmed it had lost its renewal ballot and will no longer exist at the end of September.

As well as high-profile events, they also play a part in town centre safety and there are fears successful initiatives like Pubwatch, taxi and bus marshals, safe zone and the Purple Flag scheme may not continue.

Cllr Law said: "The BID company funds the Pubwatch radios, that's just one example, and they are partners in a whole range of initiatives across the town centre.

"I'm fairly certain not everything will be lost but it will be much more difficult to deliver without the BID company, not just in financial terms but in terms of people too.

"Money is very tight but hopefully we can find a way."

Gillian Taylor, the council's community manager for Dunfermline, added: "We're hoping none of it will stop. The council do provide funding for initiatives like the bus marshals but Dunfermline Delivers are the conduit for a lot of organisations and pull everything together.

"We've worked very closely with them, as well as the police and fire service, on night-time safety so there are successful projects we don't want to let go.

"That's why it's important we find an alternative model."

Just days after the vote was announced, the BID team were in London after being shortlisted in the Association of Town & City Management Awards.

They were runners-up in the Purple Flag Best Place and Best Cultural and Arts Scheme – the latter for the Outwith Festival, which will still go ahead in September and will be the team's last event.

Dunfermline Delivers was also recognised for outstanding contribution.

She added: "They've built up very good relationships and contacts in the town. We'd certainly like to retain the team if we can find alternative funding.

"That's the biggest issue."

Vice-chair of Dunfermline Delivers, Neil Mackie, said: "It's very early stages to be honest but there's definitely an appetite from everyone to keep Dunfermline moving in the right direction.

"We're optimistic that we won't be going anywhere, that the team won't be disappearing."

Mr Chapman said: “This is not only about events and the town flourishing but it is also about keeping some great, creative talent in Dunfermline.

"The Dunfermline Delivers team are incredibly hard-working people and we should not lose that.”

Council co-leader, David Ross, said: "We’ve asked officers to look at options for continuing elements of the work undertaken by Dunfermline Delivers, particularly any projects in the immediate future, but we’ll need to take some time and talk to a range of stakeholders, so we can give proper consideration to how we go forward from here."