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Bogus workmen warning for the festive period

People in the Scottish Borders are being urged to look out for bogus workmen over the festive period. Credit: PA

People in the Scottish Borders are being urged to look out for bogus workmen over the festive period.

In particular the community is asked to look out for vulnerable people being targeted.

It follows a recent incident where neighbours of an elderly couple in Oatlands Terrace noticed a group of men carrying out work on the outside of their house. They were suspicious and contacted the police, who found out that the group of men had charged a large three-figure sum to do the work.

Three men were then charged under the Consumer Protection Act and will appear in court at a later date.

"Whilst we are in no way looking to cast suspicion on legitimate tradesman, bogus workmen actively target those in our communities who they regard as vulnerable and offer to carry out genuine work for over inflated prices and very often this is done to a sub standard of workmanship.

By highlighting to family, contacting police or indeed trading standards we can ensure that only legitimate tradesmen carry out work for homeowners within our communities.

I would also ask all members of the public never to allow cold-callers to carry out unsolicited work on your home and always check the identification of anyone claiming to be a tradesman. If you are not entirely satisfied with who they claim to be do not allow them entry to your property and contact police."

– Inspector Tony Hodges, Police Scotland

Family pay tribute to woman killed in crash

The family of a woman, who was killed in a car crash in the Borders, have paid tribute to her.

Jennifer Thomson, aged 69 and from Earlston, died in a crash yesterday (6th November) at 4.55pm on the A7, approximately three quarters of a mile south of Selkirk.

"Jennifer, although having been retired from teaching for several years, still played an active role in community affairs. She continued with supply work, the Red Cross and provided make-up for several border operatic societies. She will be sadly missed by family and friends."

– Statement from Jennifer's family

Anyone who witnessed the incident is asked to contact Police Scotland.

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Police find cannabis farm in Selkirk

Police officer stands guard at the former inn Credit: ITV Border News

Police Scotland have discovered a major cannabis farm in a dilapidated public house in the Scottish Borders.

Police officers swooped on the Queens Head Inn in West Port, Selkirk, on Tuesday when they found a large number of plants. Also recovered were various items of cultivation equipment.

Apart from a brief three month spell at the end of 2013, the Queens Head Inn has been boarded up since it was sold by Punch Taverns in 2011.

Police activity in West Port Credit: ITV News Border

There has been confusion among Selkirk residents - who regard the Queens Head Inn as a cherished local watering hole - on who actually owns the building.

It was advertised for sale last year for offers over £125,000.

"Officers are following a positive line of enquiry in relation to this matter."

– Police Scotland

Break in at Lockerbie Golf Club

Police are appealing for witnesses following a break in at Lockerbie Golf Club.

A hedger, a Honda make Flymo, an electric strimmer and an electric golf buggy are said to have all been stolen from the greenkeepers shed sometime overnight on Monday.

The stolen property is valued at around £800.

Anyone with any information should contact Police Scotland.

Police appeal for witnesses following a collision between a car and cyclist

Police in the Scottish Borders are appealing for witnesses following a serious collision near Peebles yesterday evening between a car and a cyclist.

The collision occurred around 6 o'clock last night on the A72 Peebles to Glentress Road near to Eshiels Mill. The elderly cyclist sustained serious injuries and is currently being treated at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary where he is in a critical condition. The road was closed for six hours to allow an investigation to be carried out.

Police investigate 'unexplained death' in Gretna

Sebastian Masiewicz died at the Cumberland Infirmary. Credit: Police Scotland

Police Scotland are making enquiries into the unexplained death of a 30-year-old man in Gretna.

Sebastian Masiewicz, a Polish National, was found unconscious at a house in Loanwath Road on the morning of Sunday 19 October 2014. He was later pronounced dead at the Cumberland Infirmary at Carlisle.

Police are keen to trace Sebastian's movements on the Saturday before his death.

“We are aware that Sebastian had lived in Warwick Road in Carlisle for the past month or so.

"We believe he travelled through to the Stewartry area of Dumfries and Galloway on Saturday afternoon where he went fishing with a friend at Loch Ken and Loch Arthur, before returning to Gretna on Saturday evening, where he arranged to stay overnight with relatives."

– Detective Chief Inspector Laura Mcluckie

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Helicopter rescue for walkers in Galloway

Two men became lost in the Galloway Hills Credit: PA

Two men descending the highest mountain in the Galloway Hills were rescued by helicopter last night, after becoming disoriented.

The alarm was raised at about 7pm, when they became lost while making their way down the Merrick.

Police Scotland asked the Galloway Mountain Rescue Team to help, and seven members went to the mountain to locate the walkers.

But as they made their way to the area, the men were rescued by a police helicopter, which was able to land and evacuate them despite the failing light.

It is the first time the Police Scotland helicopter has been deployed in a rescue of this type.

Elderly couple in Peebles targeted by bogus caller

Police in the Scottish Borders are investigating after an elderly couple were victims of a bogus workman in Peebles.

At 11am on Friday, 15 August, the elderly man, who was in his garden, was approached by another man who offered to fell trees for £350.

The man returned around 10am on Monday, 18 August, but after cutting down the trees he demanded more money for them to be removed.

The elderly man handed over more money than had originally been agreed.

The suspect is described as:

  • 30 years old
  • medium build
  • Mediterranean appearance
  • narrow moustache on upper lip with a pointed goatee beard
  • tan t-shirt, chainsaw safety trousers and boots

“We’d like to warn people in the Scottish Borders to be wary of people offering work around the house or garden.

"If you are uncertain as to someone's identity do not allow them entry and contact police if they fail to leave.

"Our communities are also asked to be vigilant on behalf of vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours and report any suspicious activities or people around their homes to police."

– Inspector Tony Hodges, Police Scotland

Those with information can contact Police Scotland on 101 or alternatively, the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Police in the Borders investigate hit and run

Police in the Borders are appealing for witnesses after a hit and run incident in Stow yesterday, Tuesday 19 August.

A silver Mazda car hit three other parked vehicles on the A7 Galashiels Road at about 7.45pm.

Police say the Mazda hit the other cars with 'significant force' and continued down a small embankment before coming to a stop.

The male driver and female passenger of the Mazda then left the car and began to travel northwards, towards Edinburgh, by foot.

The man is described as white, 5ft 8in, of medium build, and he was wearing a dark blue t-shirt and jeans.

“No one was hurt during this incident but there was extensive damage to all four cars, and we are working very hard to identify those responsible.

“A 29-year-old woman was detained and then released pending further enquiries, and our officers are following a positive line of enquiry."

– Chief Inspector Kenny Simpson, Police Scotland

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Police Scotland on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Medication stolen from property in Hawick

Police in the Scottish Borders have issued a warning after a quantity of strong medication was stolen from a property in Hawick.

A house in Trinity Street was broken into at about 9pm on Saturday, 16 August.

Several items were stolen, including a number of packets of Methylphenidate medication.

Anyone who comes across the pills is asked to hand them in to the nearest police station.

"These tablets are only meant for consumption by the individual they are prescribed to and can have significant health implications if taken by anyone else.

"We would ask anyone who finds the medication to hand it over to police as soon as possible."

– Police Inspector Carol Wood, Police Scotland
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