THE inaugural 'Cosy Townhill' lunch on Monday saw 45 local residents enjoying a hot meal in the community centre.

It's a warm space initiative running over the winter months which gives villagers somewhere to meet up, heat up and eat up as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite.

From Monday to Friday, 9am to 9pm, the centre is open and locals can sit and have a chat, they have access to hot drinks, toast and biscuits, as well as board games and books, and every two weeks the plan is to offer a free hot meal.

One of the volunteers, Linda Cowan, from Townhill Community Council, said: "It's a really good initiative and it's not just running here.

"Yes, combatting the cost of living is a part of it, if they can't put the heating on at home this is somewhere warm they can come and spend time.

"But it's as much about getting people out of the house, bringing them together in a nice, friendly and cosy space and having fun.

"It is fantastic what can be achieved for our local community here in Townhill when we all pull together."

Brian Cashman, Townhill Community Centre manager, helped get the venture up and running and there are 10 volunteers, members of the community council, the church and local residents, who are making and dishing up the food.

Visitors enjoyed stovies, soup and oatcakes on Monday and the organisers are keeping it local by buying all the ingredients from the Townhill Keystore, with support from owner Nadeem Akhtar.

Linda added: "It's an initiative by Fife Voluntary Action and Fife Council and we had to apply for funding in November.

"We were lucky enough to be accepted and given a grant, which helped pay for a soup kettle, a toaster, crockery and cutlery, and the food.

"It's for everyone, all age groups. Our youngest at lunch on Monday was three and the oldest was over 80 – it's a community, social event rather than a charity."

The menu will change each time – the next free lunch will be on Monday January 30, from noon to 1.30pm – and, going by the feedback, it's already proving popular.

She explained: "We have evaluation forms so people can give their views and make suggestions, such as what worked well or what they might like to eat next time.

"We had a lot of lovely comments, about the friendly atmosphere, the food and the volunteers, so we're really pleased.

"We would like to thank those who attended and especially to all of those involved who helped make this inaugural event such a success."