Councillor Willie Clarke’s represented Ballingry and Lochore on Fife County Council for many decades. He first took up public office in 1973 as a Communist councillor with Fife County Council and went on to be elected as a councillor with Lochgelly District Council, Fife Regional Council and Fife Council. He has served on a range of committees including roads and drainage, health and education.
Willie, having spent his working life amongst miners and playing a very important role within the voluntary groups in the areas has become highly regarded and respected within his community. His extraordinary success at the ballot box bears that out. Willie Clarke has even been presented with a Long Service Award by the Provost of Fife, John Simpson, in recognition of his work as a councillor.
After the demise of the Communist Party of Great Britain in 1992, Councillor Clarke sought re-election under their banner of the Communist Party of Scotland. In 2002, he was elected with 1,291 first preference votes, under a new system, or 95% of the vote in Lochgelly in 2003 in The Lochs ward, more or less the same area he has always represented..
Together with another former Communist councillor, the self-styled `Democratic Left’ candidate, Alex Maxwell (see separate entry), they combined in the form of `the Left Alliance’, a designation they assigned to their two-man group on the 78 seat Fife council.
Willie Clarke finally stood down in 2016, had a local visitor centre named after him and died in 2019.