INCREASING the pedestrianisation of Dunfermline town centre and changing opening hours is one option being considered to help businesses post-lockdown.

The Fife Council Town Centre Restart Group has £50,000 to spend on making improvements to towns and supporting the local economy.

Councillor Helen Law, convener of the City of Dunfermline area committee, told the Press: “Although obviously restrictions are in place in line with government guidelines, Dunfermline is opening up for business.

“Over the first number of weeks of the lockdown the council made sure all efforts were rightly focussed on dealing with the virus and trying to ensure local people had all the support they needed.

“However, over the last number of weeks as many projects supplying and delivering meals, delivering prescriptions and other support were well established, other meetings were able to resume.

“Meetings such as the local heritage partnership, the Heart of Dunfermline and the town centre recovery group, which has has been looking at options of extending the pedestrianised time frame.

“There is also a desire to look at the possibilities of different opening hours and outside seating. Currently the 12 to 3pm pedestrianised time does not work that well and many residents would like to see this expanded.

“We will of course have to consult with businesses as the prospect of a longer pedestrianised time frame would impact on business deliveries. There are also discussions on how to improve off-street disabled badge holder parking.”

The funding is a result of the council securing £83,150 from the Scottish Government’s Towns and BIDs Resilience and Recovery Fund. The £50,000 will be spent in Dunfermline and across Fife, while the remaining £33,150 will be spent in other areas of the Kingdom.

The council’s current rules state that no vehicles should be present within the High Street area Monday to Saturday between 12 and 3pm.

Any vehicle which enters the High Street before noon, but is still there during the restricted times can be issued with a fixed penalty notice. Only commercial vehicles servicing a property, or vehicles legitimately displaying a blue badge are permitted.