Boleside barriers

In my letter in TheSouthern on January 6 I asked whether any other readers had been required to seek permission to use the Boleside picnic site near Galashiels.

Since then a deplorable catalogue of events has come to my attention. A sign appeared, worded to deny access along a public road, and people have been accosted for using the public footpath down the steps from the A7 to the former Abbotsford ferry and station.

It seems Laggan Properties has a problem with people using public rights of way, and accessing the countryside under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003. Its actions are reminicent of the Border clearances of 1602, but this time the landowners are clearing the natives from the Borders, in favour of fish.

Perhaps a community buy-out is the way forward for Boleside, but the idea of public money being used to reward Laggan Properties really sticks in my craw.

Alastair Ling, Galashiels