The Board of Cupar Development Trust (SC522831) has held its second meeting of 2020, remotely because of Coronavirus. All Board Members took part, and the discussion ranged widely. They were unanimous that CDT should look ahead strategically, not only beyond the virus but into future years, but were realistic about the likely practical and financial impact of the virus for the next year or two.
The virus has provided impetus to update CDT’s presence on social media, and its website is being updated, both with welcome guidance from CuparNow.
A main objective of CDT is to ensure delivery of Cupar’s 2017 Interpretive Plan, and so far as practicable, existing projects are being advanced. These include the town’s Arrival and Interpretive Signage, which David Kirk, who retired from the Board in December, continues to lead, working with CMC Associates, the consultants responsible for preparing the Interpretive Plan. Designs are progressing well, including a new digital map of Cupar, which will be the base for future overlays of choice. The Signage, in six places in the town, will include QR Codes which can be scanned to link to additional information selected by the visitor. CDT will work with other organisations in the town to develop trails catering to various interests, and the entire project has taken into account the needs of the less mobile and the visually impaired.
The Inner Court and Gap Site project, supported by Fife Council, is being led by Kingdom Housing, who have already contributed well to Cupar. The ideas for Inner Court were first displayed publicly during the 2016 Charrette, which was well attended by local people, all of whom supported the aspirations. Detailed plans are being discussed with Council officials. CDT hope that the development will not only re-purpose a derelict area in the town centre but also provide an extended network of pedestrian closes for public use – an aspect of the town which is nationally recognised. The CDT Board is discussing landscape possibilities with its project partners, and hopes that the issue of waste management and pavement obstructions will be taken into account – this is being discussed also with ABCD, Cupar’s Businesses Association. The Board discussed also possibilities for better greening of the town, both at its approaches and closer to the centre, and considered other sites which require improvement.
CDT has received initial funding from Fife Culture Trust for a Children’s Day celebrating the Old Scots Language in medieval Cupar, another element of the Interpretive Plan, with Costumes, Storytelling and a professional Concert. Important guests have accepted invitations to participate, and the event will celebrate also the 150th anniversary of the Duncan Institute, where Display Cases are to be installed to display facsimiles of works by two of Cupar’s famous sixteenth century sons who wrote in Old Scots – the playwright Sir David Lindsay and his historian cousin Robert Lindsay. The Library, as well as being the home of the Fife Family History Society, has hosted the working group on the cataloguing, by St Andrews University Special Collections team, of the archives of the Royal Burgh of Cupar from 1364 to 1975, and will be a hub helping to celebrate the intellectual heritage of Cupar and District.
The Children’s Day is planned for the autumn of this year, but that may not be possible depending on the state of the nation in light of Coronavirus.
The Board received reports on Scotland’s Towns Partnership and on the Development Trusts Association Scotland of both of which CDT is a member, and from the Chair, Bill Pagan, who is a member of the Scottish Parliament’s Cross-Party Group on Scotland’s towns.
The CDT Board will hold its next meeting in June, and it is assumed that this will have to be attended remotely.
Cupar Development Trust is a Company Limited by Guarantee (SC522831)