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Borders broadband boost

Programme Director for Digital Scotland – Liz Mallinson, Barrie Sweenie from Openreach, Mid-Berwickshire Ward Members – councillors Donald Moffat, John Greenwell and Frances Renton welcome broadband to Leitholm. Credit: Digital Scotland

More than 1,300 homes and businesses in and around Leitholm and Coldstream can now connect to fibre broadband.

The 300 homes and businesses in Leitholm and the 1,000 in Coldstream are among the 16,000 Scottish Borders premises now able to access fibre broadband due to the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband rollout.

To celebrate the occasion, Mid-Berwickshire Ward Members – councillors Frances Renton, Donald Moffat and John Greenwell - and members of the Digital Scotland programme unveiled one of Leitholm’s new fibre cabinets – with a golden 16K sign attached to mark the event.

Combined with BT’s commercial coverage, it means that more than 38,000 premises across the Borders can now sign up with a service provider to receive fibre broadband.

As part of the day’s events, the Digital Scotland team were also in nearby Coldstream at the Court House Place Car Park where residents were able to attend a special drop-in event. Representatives from the Digital Scotland team were on hand to get people up to speed with the technology and provide advice on signing up with a service provider.

The £410 million Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme aims to provide fibre broadband infrastructure to parts of Scotland not included in commercial providers’ investment plans.

The local premises are among more than 350,000 across Scotland which can now access fibre broadband services at speeds of up to 80Mbps* as part of the rollout, being delivered on the ground by engineers from BT’s local network business, Openreach.

Fibre broadband enables multiple users in a home or business to access the internet, download and share large files at the same time more quickly than ever before. In order to take advantage of the higher speeds now available, residents should contact their service provider.

Scottish Borders Council (SBC) has contributed £8.4 million to the Digital Scotland rollout in addition to block funding from all the Scottish local authorities.

“It’s great to see that the Digital Scotland programme is making its way across the Scottish Borders, particularly in to some of our more rural and smaller villages. Fibre broadband opens up new opportunities for businesses and homes, as well as rural life.

“We know how important access to high-speed internet technology is to both residents and businesses – which is why Scottish Borders Council chose to invest £8.4 million into the programme’s rollout, to ensure as many people as possible can benefit from it.”

“Being connected can make such a contribution to all aspects of everyday life and work, and it’s great that Leitholm and Coldstream are now able to join the rising tide of communities which are already feeling the benefits.”

– Cllr Stuart Bell, SBC’s Executive Member for Economic Developmen

New exhibition to open at Coldstream Museum

Squarescapes, by Rich Johnson Credit: Rich Johnson

The first exhibition of the year is set to open at Coldstream Museum, showing the work of a local artist.

Rich Johnson's exhibition is called Squarescapes, and features landscapes inspired by his surroundings:

“My art is influenced by the landscape of the area - woods, fields and streams – and playing, walking and exploring them.

“It had a profound influence on me and I keep coming back to these themes in my work. I'm interested in borders generally - where trees meet fields, where the horizon meets the sky and of course where the land meets the sea.

"Squarescapes started life as small eight-inch square canvasses, little snapshots of landscape as glimpsed and remembered while travelling around the Borders, but they gradually grew larger.”

– Rich Johnson, artist

Squarescapes opens on Monday 30 March until Sunday 31 May.

The exhibition will be open 9:30am to 12:30pm and 1pm to 4pm, Monday to Saturday, and 2pm to 4pm on Sundays.


Coldstream Civic Week begins

Credit: ITV News Border

Coldstream Civic Week officially begins today with the introduction of the Coldstreamer, the principal figure in the celebrations, and the bussing of the Burgh Flag.

Four ride-outs are held throughout the week in Norham, Birgham, Leitholm and Flodden.

Flodden is the longest and largest of the events with around 300 horses and riders expected to take part.

The Flodden ride-out is held on Thursday 7th August at 10.30am.

Dog owners warned about poisonous pellets

Dog owners in a Berwickshire town are being urged to remain vigilant after a puppy was rushed to the vets with suspected poisoning.

It's not the first time biscuits and pellets laced with poison have been found on the pavements in Coldstream.

Police are investigating the incident, in which a black labrador had to have emergency treatment. Jenny Longden reports.

Police investigating possible dog poisonings

Dog owners in Coldstream are being warned to be vigilant, after a puppy may have been poisoned.

The labrador swallowed a suspicious looking pellet left on the pavement, but has since recovered.

Police have confirmed they are investigating several incidents where suspected poison has been left out for dogs.

"Police are investigating following reports of a dog having consumed poison on 7 July in Coldstream and a further incident on the 16 June when a dog walker found similar food.

"Enquiries are ongoing and that anyone with information or suspects that poisoned dog food has been left contacts the police on 101."

– Spokesman, Police Scotland

Puppy poisoned in Coldstream

Ronan the puppy Credit: Fiona Smith

A puppy had to be rushed to the vets after suspected poisoning in a Berwickshire town.

The one-year-old black Labrador called Ronan was taken to vets after swallowing a pellet left on the pavement.

Pellets found on the pavement in Coldstream Credit: Fiona Smith

The puppy's owner Fiona Smith said he is now fine thanks to the quick work of a vet, but urges other dog owners to look out for anything suspicious.

She said "We were all in shock. We're not sure exactly what was in the poison but the vet said our puppy could have died within hours."

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