A row has broken out in the Scottish Borders over plans to redefine council ward boundaries. Under the proposals, rural areas surrounding Hawick have been included in a new Jedburgh ward.
Local people say it will break long standing ties to areas, including an historic battleground that shapes Hawick's annual Common Riding festival. Jenny Longden reports.
A petition has begun calling for Hornshole to remain as part of the Hawick ward.
Burnfoot Community Council Chairman Michael Grieve has started the petition after Scottish Borders Council failed to oppose plans to remove the historic battleground from the Hawick and Denholm ward, in revised local government boundaries.
Under the proposals, the battle site, which is central to the town's common riding festival, will be part of a larger Jedburgh ward.
The plans are part of a national review by the Local Government Boundary Commission of Scotland, who want elected representatives in council to reflect the distribution of voters.
Councillors say there are many rural areas that face joining a different ward under the proposals.
Michael Grieve says the community must fight the plans:
It is quite frightening that 500 years ago we fought over this site and now someone with the score of a pen can just change it and nothing happens. So we have to show the Boundary Commission that these monuments to our past are important and should remain in the areas that they are supposed to be.
Selkirk Community Recycling Centre is closing temporarily on Monday 1 June for maintenance and improvement works.
The site will re-open as normal the following day.
Scottish Borders Council apologises for any inconvenience and during the closure other community recycling centres remain open.
The nearest alternative sites are:
· Galashiels Community Recycling Centre, Langshaw Road, Galashiels, TD1 2NT
· Hawick Community Recycling Centre, Mansfield Road, Hawick, TD9 8AW
Both centres are open from 9am to 5pm.
New food waste collection services in the Scottish Borders will be explained in a series of information sessions throughout the region.
Around 24,000 homes get the new services by Scottish Borders Council.
The first phase is due to be introduced in Galashiels, Peebles, Selkirk and Tweedbank next month, with the second phase to be rolled out in September in Hawick and Jedburgh.
Food waste collections will be weekly and householders who receive this new collection service will get:
- Two caddies, one for indoors and one for outdoors (outdoor caddy collected weekly)
- A free supply of liners
- A full guide to the new service, before collections begin
Eight roadshow information sessions are being held at the following dates and venues:
- Monday 27 April, 5.45pm to 7.45pm, Focus Centre, Galashiels
- Tuesday 28 April, 5.30pm to 7.30pm, Tweedbank Community Centre
- Thursday 30 April, 4.30pm to 6.30pm, St Joseph’s Neighbourhood Centre, Peebles
- Saturday 2 May, 10am to 12noon, Cross Keys, Selkirk
- Saturday 2 May, 2pm to 4pm, Eastgate Theatre, Peebles
- Tuesday 5 May, 3.30pm to 6.30pm, Philiphaugh Community Centre, Selkirk
- Saturday 9 May, 10am to 12noon, Hergés on the Loch, Tweedbank
- Saturday 9 May, 2pm to 4pm, Tesco, Galashiels
Scottish Borders Council is reviewing the delivery of its Information and Communications Technology after a report has found that the service is not meeting the needs of its customers.
A strategy has been agreed in principle at a Council meeting, which includes an assessment of value for money as to how the service will be implemented in the future.
Among the options being considered are moves to outsource the majority of technical posts from Edinburgh City Council, or to outsource the entire service. This could mean 80 jobs moving from Newtown St Boswells.
“In order to meet the needs of the Council and the people we serve, we regularly look at how we can deliver our services.
As part of this we have undertaken a review of this service and have been developing a comprehensive ICT strategy and approach for the future.
Members agreed the strategy in principle at Thursday’s Council meeting and approved the next steps in developing a detailed implementation plan.
Plans to build a wind farm between Stow and Lauder have been rejected by Scottish Borders Council.
Airvolution's application for the seven turbine site at Muircleugh was unanimously refused by the Council’s Planning and Building Standards Committee yesterday morning.
The council believes it would have an "unacceptable" impact on the landscape and character of the area.
But the company behind the plans claims the council has 'lost out on over £3.9m of investment' to the region. It says it is considering its options with regards to next steps.
Up to 90 jobs could go in the Scottish Borders following a review, according to the union that represents staff there.
Scottish Borders Council is being asked to look at the running of its technology department. But one of the options would mean jobs going from Newtown St Boswells to Edinburgh. Jenny Longden reports
The Unite Union warns 80 Scottish Borders Council jobs could be transferred from Newtown St Boswells to Edinburgh.
The Council says a statement on the proposals should be given in early April:
"We have undertaken a review of our current ICT arrangements.
On 2 April, a private report will be presented to Council and we should be able to provide a statement on the proposals thereafter.
As always, staff and Unions have been briefed ahead of the report being considered by Council".
A Union official in the Borders warns that his members are ready to fight plans to switch 80 jobs to Edinburgh from Newtown St Boswells.
A review has found that a technology service at Scottish Borders Council is no longer fit for purpose, and recommends a joint arrangement with the City of Edinburgh Council.
It's understood that employees at the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) service were given the findings of a review on Tuesday.
The Union Union believe this could mean that 80 jobs in the department will relocate to Edinburgh.
Regional officer for Unite Union, Tony Trench, told ITV Border:
"Members are furious at the way they have been treated.
They don't want to go to Edinburgh City, many were born and bred in the Borders, they live here.
Where does it stop? This could be the beginning of the end of Scottish Borders Council."
The public are being asked for their views on plans to relocate the town's library and contact centre to an historic town centre landmark.
Scottish Borders Council have bought various properties surrounding Sir Walter Scott's Courthouse, including a former pub and a residential property.
They hope the regeneration project will improve the town centre and visitor facilities.
The community will be able to find out more about the project and the available options at drop-in sessions in the Cross Keys Regeneration Hub on Thursday 26th and Tuesday 31st March.