In 1894 the Parish Councils Act established new local elected bodies designed to give communities more of a voice. These Parish Councils replaced the Parochial Boards that had been in existence for half a century beforehand. However, by 1930, Parish Councils themselves were abolished under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1929. Their powers were transferred to county councils and burgh councils.
So, in early May 1930, the Largo Parish Council, which had an office at 6 Hillhead Street (see 1925 valuation roll above), met for the final time. Officials such as Chairman of six years John Adam and clerk of ten years Hugh Percival demitted office on 15 May. A final audit of the affairs of the Largo Parish Council was carried out in July 1930. In 1931 a new Largo Parish Community Council was formed. The extract below from the 'Largo Village Book' tells us that many local organisations chose to associate with the new community council. The lists of clubs, associations, and other bodies illustrates the vibrancy of the community at the time.
At the end of its first year in existence, the LPCC held its first Annual General Meeting in the Temperance Hall, Lundin Links. The first order of business was to express regret at the recent death of John Adam. There followed a review of the main areas of focus from the past year. These included: the creation of a local calendar to ensure that there was no clashing of events; the protection of the amenities of the villages; the printing and publishing of a guide book to the area; agitating for better lighting of Lower Largo and Lundin Links; planning of foreshore improvements; and helping to fill vacancies on the County and District Councils. One example of how the LPCC 'protected the amenities' of the place related to requesting the removal of a double hoarding with coloured posters, advertising Golden Lager, that had been erected at the east end of Upper Largo. Future blog posts will look in more detail at the guide book mentioned and at the 'foreshore improvements' in relation to Massney Braes.
The 18 October 1932 Leven Advertiser also listed the office bearers re-elected for the second year of the LPCC (details below). Much of the work of the community council was undertaken by Charles Raeburn, pictured at the foot of this post, who resided at 'Naikban' on Bourtree Brae. Born in Banff in 1875, Raeburn was an engineer, who had travelled extensively with his work. India, China, Russia, France, Belgium and Burma were among the places that his work had taken him, prior to retiring to Lower Largo in 1929. He named his home 'Naikban' as it meant 'heaven' in old Burmese. He died in 1955 aged 79 and more can be read about his life here.
After the Second World War, the Largo Parish Community Council morphed into an 'Improvements Association' covering Lundin Links, Lower Largo and Upper Largo. Over time this divided into individual village 'improvements associations' which had varying periods of existence. In 1975 new community councils were formed in Scotland, under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973.