Press release

Coastal Communities Fund money to build a world class exhibition centre in Kirkcaldy

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Cabinet Minister Eric Pickles announces funding for Adam Smith Global Foundation Exhibition Centre in Kirkcaldy.

Artist's impression of the finished Adam Smith Centre
Artist's impression of the finished Adam Smith Centre

A new world class exhibition centre will be built in Adam Smith’s hometown using Coastal Communities Funding, Secretary of State, Eric Pickles announced today (24 February 2014).

The announcement came during a visit to the Adam Smith Global Foundation in Kirkcaldy. Mr Pickles, on his way to attend a Cabinet meeting of Her Majesty’s Government in Aberdeen, saw first-hand the new exhibition centre site that aims to attract visitors from all over the world. The new centre will be housed in a renovated listed historic building.

Mr Pickles said he was delighted the UK government could support the project and the foundation’s work in using Adam Smith’s legacy as a catalyst for regenerating Kirkcaldy and boosting the local economy.

As part of our long term economic plan, the UK government is backing businesses, local areas and industries to prosper, and build a stronger economy across the country. The multi-million pound Coastal Communities Fund is so far helping 130 seaside towns tap into new business opportunities that will create over 6,000 jobs, more than 500 apprenticeships and boost skills that will benefit the whole community. It will also attract £56 million in additional funding from partners.

The exhibition centre is the first project to be announced as part of round 2 of the Coastal Communities Fund. It is the nineteenth project in Scotland to receive funding, and brings the total of Scottish coastal projects supported by the Coastal Communities Fund to over £4 million. Scottish seaside towns can expect to receive up to £9 million of additional funding up to 2014 to 2015.

Current condition of building that will house the Adam Smith Centre
Current condition of building that will house the Adam Smith Centre

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:

Adam Smith was one of Kirkcaldy’s most famous sons and was rightly given pride of place on the United Kingdom’s £20 note. So it’s great the Global Foundation is making his legacy a catalyst for regenerating Kirkcaldy and the local economy.

The UK government is backing businesses, local areas and industries to prosper, and build a stronger economy across the country. I am delighted to announce over a quarter of million pounds for the new exhibition centre which will help Kirkcaldy tap into new business opportunities that will create local jobs, boost the local economy and develop skills that will benefit the whole community.

Marilyn Livingstone, Chief Executive Officer for the Adam Smith Global Foundation said:

I am delighted the Foundation and Fife Historic Building’s Trust have been successful in their bid to the Coastal Communities Fund. This funding will allow completion of this amazing project which will support the legacy of Adam Smith in his birthplace of Kirkcaldy as well as kick starting Kirkcaldy’s ambition to regenerate its historic Merchant’s Quarter. This is the beginning of a much awaited journey and has allowed us to draw down investment to the town of over £750 million.

Michael Levack, Chairman of the Adam Smith Global Foundation said:

We could not have achieved this without the help and support of our partners. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Secretary of State, Kirkcaldy’s Ambition Partnership Group, Fife Historic Buildings Trust, Fife Council, Fife Environment Trust and Historic Scotland for their contribution. I would also like to thank the many other individuals and organisations who have made this announcement today possible.

Further information

  1. The UK government will provide £292,000 in funding for the new centre from the Coastal Communities Fund which will receive wider co-funding from partners including from Fife Council, Historic Scotland and Fife Environment Trust for the over £700,000 project.
  2. The new visitor centre will also support 3 jobs and create at least 8 work placements offering certificated training in the tourism, retail and heritage sectors delivered in association with Fife College.
  3. The UK-wide Coastal Communities Fund was created by the government in 2011 to provide grants on a bid basis to support the economic development of coastal communities.
  4. The fund is equal to 50% of the revenues generated by the Crown Estate’s marine assets. Based on the Crown Estate’s Marine revenues in 2010/12 (£58.2million) the overall fund is worth £29.1 million beginning in 2014. Funds can be used to support both capital and revenue projects and communities are encouraged to match funds with other pots of money.
  5. The Adam Smith Global Foundation, a charitable trust, was launched in 2012 in Adam Smith’s birth town of Kirkcaldy which aims to deliver initiatives to commemorate his work on an international scale, as well as raising awareness of the role that Kirkcaldy played in his life. The foundation also seek to prevent and relieve poverty through projects which will increase employability for young people, and act as a catalyst for regeneration.
  6. Adam Smith (1723-1790) was a British moral philosopher and economist, born in Kirkcaldy and best known for his work ‘An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations’ (1776), one of the most influential books ever written, and leading him to be cited as the founding father of modern economics.

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Published 24 February 2014