Cafe culture put on hold in Hawick, but other park work ahead of schedule

Hawick councillor Davie Paterson in Wilton Lodge Park.
Hawick councillor Davie Paterson in Wilton Lodge Park.

The multi-million-pound regeneration of Hawick’s Wilton Lodge Park is ahead of schedule despite hold-ups hitting work on a new cafe there.

A variety of new facilities will be opened in the first half of this year as part of the £3.64m revamp, funded by Scottish Borders Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

It will see the majority of the new infrastructure ready by May, almost a year ahead of the overall project’s scheduled completion date of April 2018.

The new bridge is expected to be installed next month, marking a significant milestone for the project.

However, some drainage and design issues have led to completion of the cafe being delayed, putting its expected opening date back to May. Tendering for the lease of the cafe is set to begin next month.

Work on the playpark could be finished as soon as next month, ahead of schedule, weather permitting.

Once the new playpark is complete, the council will look to remove the old one and replace it with additional parking for users of the 3G pitch nearby.

Works to the park’s footpaths and cycleways, including the installation of new lighting and signs, are expected to be finished by April.

Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar, the council’s executive member for roads and infrastructure, said: “It is disappointing that there has been a delay to the cafe, but it will still be ready in time for the busy summer season and will be a high-quality attraction for the park for a number of years.

“The bridge will be a stunning addition to the park and the footpath and cycleway works will encourage walking and cycling throughout the year.”

Hawick and Hermitage councillor Davie Paterson, the authority’s executive member for environmental services, added: “It is fantastic to hear that the playpark will be ready ahead of schedule.

“I believe this facility will attract parents and children from across the Borders and beyond to Wilton Lodge Park and Hawick.

“With the opening of the bandstand and improvements to Hawick Museum and the walled garden having already taken place, the Wilton Lodge Park regeneration project is proving to be a hugely valuable initiative for the town.”

Visit www.facebook.com/ wiltonlodgepark or www.scotborders.gov.uk/wiltonlodge for updates on the progress of work at the park.