John Gibson: Methil in the Monte Carlo mix

Manky Methil. The Fife tip, reviled by The Proclaimers and Jack Vettriano, is being mangled again. A new travel guide lists it among the top five least desirable places in the UK.

Tuesday, 3rd April 2012, 1:00 pm

It’s not easy to put in a praiseworthy word for it – I know. I’ve been there. But a long time ago, though not nearly as far back as when Prince Philip, serving in the Royal Navy, his ship docked there and he branded it “a dump” and a “terrible place to stay”.

The Proclaimers mentioned it in their Letter from America and Vettriano used its power station as a backdrop for some of his earliest work.

Can I put it this way, so inglorious that Methil makes Cowdenbeath look like Monte Carlo? Cruel? Not really if you’ve been.

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Was a time when I motored over to Methil infrequently to cover football at the town’s Bayview “stadium”, but thankfully that is no more as East Fife have moved to a new ground in the town.

Far as I know, there’s no known cure for this altogether unfortunate heap. It’s like a drug. Maybe a shot of methildone is what we all need.

Afterwords . .

. . . spilling from Stephanie Beacham, who has been touring in a production inspired by singing lessons given by Maria Callas in the Seventies: “I can find opera the most fabulous evening I can have or one of the silliest. Seeing a fat woman singing and pretending to be 16 years old does not move me, unless to tears of laughter.”