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Your Say

Your picture of the Week

Brian Tait bagged this image of Davidson’s Linn, site of an illegal still in bygone days, just off the Pennine Way at the head of the Bowmont Valley.

Please send photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Maxton kirk

Your picture of the Week

This view of Maxton Kirk surrounded in fresh spring colours was supplied by Curtis Welsh.

Please send photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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took this shot of the standing stones on Brotherstone Hill near Smailholm just before sunrise

Your picture of the Week

Walter Baxter took this shot of the standing stones on Brotherstone Hill, near Smailholm, just before sunrise.

Please send photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Took this pic of a roe deer just outside Kelso.
Graeme Rae

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Graeme Rae took this image of a roe deer just outside Kelso.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Grazing sheep and lambs at Sandyknowe Farm Smailholm with Smailholm Tower as a backdrop.

Your picture of the Week

Curtis Welsh snapped these grazing sheep and lambs at Sandyknowe Farm, with Smailholm Tower as a backdrop.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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The foreground field was the site of the amphitheatre at the Roman fort of Trimontium at Newstead. Leaderfoot Viaduct is in the background.

Your picture of the Week

The field in the foreground of Walter Baxter’s image was the site of the amphitheatre at the Roman fort of Trimontium, Newstead. Leaderfoot viaduct is in the background.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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By the banks of the River Ale near Longnewton

Your picture of the Week

Curtis Welsh’s four-legged friend needed a rest during a walk along the banks of the River Ale by Longnewton.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Bewliehill Bridge over the Ale Water by Lilliesfleaf.

Your picture of the Week

Curtis Welsh saw these snowdrops beside the recently-rebuilt Bewliehill Bridge over the Ale Water, near Lilliesleaf.

The datestone indicates that the structure was first built in 1880. Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Sunrise in Melrose, taken by Hilary Baines

Your picture of the Week

Sunrise in Melrose, taken by Hilary Baines.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Your picture of the Week

Your picture of the Week

Ewan Dickson captured the Cheviot Hills covered in snow with this image taken from near Morebattle.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Heartfelt plea to save historic Auld Kirk

Heartfelt plea to save historic Auld Kirk

One of the things that all Selkirk people will agree on is that they would like to see a more commercially-successful town, one with a greater appeal to visitors and a more attractive burgh altogether.

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Night-time image of road-surfacing in St Boswells.

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This night-time image of road-surfacing in St Boswells is provided courtesy of Alex McSorley, who told us: “I was hoping for light trails with a long exposure and, right on cue, one of the HGVs reversed with all lights blazing and caused the carousel effect.”

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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a stoat beside the bird hide at Yetholm Loch nature reserve

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This stoat beside the bird hide at Yetholm Loch nature reserve was caught in the lens of Graeme Rae who told us: “Work has begun on a massive wind turbine being erected on the opposite side of the loch.

It could affect swans, geese – in fact all wildfowl, especially in the winter when they are aplenty. Osprey also visit the loch in the summer months.” Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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This was taken from the summit of Eildon Mid Hill on a glorious day when a sea of fog extended from the Eildons to the Cheviot Hills

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A sea of fog extended from the Eildons to the Cheviots when Walter Baxter captured this scene from the summit of Eildon Mid Hill.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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the old lint mill bridge at Ancrum.

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Ian Abernethy supplied this image of the old lint mill bridge at Ancrum.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Old Thirlstane Castle by Lauder  highlighted by the strong afternoon sunlight.

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Old Thirlstane Castle, near Lauder, is highlighted by strong afternoon sunlight in this Curtis Welsh photograph.

Please email pictures, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Alistair Buchan took this image of winter sunrise from Gattonside.

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Alistair Buchan took this image of winter sunrise from Gattonside.

Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Monteath Mausoleum at Lilliardsedge, by Ancrum at daybreak, with a full moon about to disappear as early morning light increases

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A disappearing full moon vies with increasing early-morning light at Monteath Mausoleum, Lilliardsedge, near

Ancrum, in this Curtis Welsh image. Please email photographic contributions, with a brief caption, to

southern-letters@jpress.co.uk

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Letters to the editor

Taxpayers and the tapestry

Alex Orr (letters, December 22) lists the freebies available to Scots through public spending that is 20% higher than in England.

He omits the crucial fact that those freebies and that spending are paid for by the English taxpayer. The nationalists always omit the essential truth that Scotland is kept afloat by the British Treasury and the Bank of England.

If Scotland was an independent country it would have a fiscal deficit of £14.5bn – worse even than Greece. Break the Union and you break Scotland as a going concern.

Scotland has been in the red every year since devolution – even when oil revenues were high. Now that they have plummeted, things have gone from bad to worse.

Scotland’s deficit of 9.5% is well over the 3% required for EU membership which the SNP bosses crave. To kneel at the door of Brussels, income tax would have to rise from 20p to 39p, or VAT would have to increase to 40%. Alternatively, savage spending cuts would have to be implemented, sweeping away all the freebies, slashing the NHS budget by 80%, stopping all spending on roads and railways, and giving up on even the pretence of armed forces.

Mind you, even without the ball and chain of independence, it will be a struggle to maintain our freebies. And yet still the magic money tree is shaken for ever more superfluous projects – such as the Great Tapestry of Scotland building in Galashiels.

The deeper Scotland gets into debt the more we seem to spend on extras while vital services are cut.

Writing in The Times on December 21, Alistair Moffat, a “co-chairman” of the tapestry project, states that viewers of this nationalist artwork are “often moved to tears”. Taxpayers will be so moved when the final itemised bill is presented to them.

Thanks to the local press we know Scottish Borders Council (SBC) has already spent £520,000 on this nationalist project, will cough up another £3.5m and maybe more, while Holyrood will spend £2.5m. Total cost will be over £7m.

To be fair, the project is expected to return £50,000 a year which means the tapestry building will be paid back in 140 years. But as SBC’s Rob Dickson warned, “failure to meet visitor targets or manage costs will require ongoing subsidy”.

William Loneskie

Oxton

Your Say 1

Aussie on the trail of Borders family history

I am seeking information about my family - and there are several Lintons and Robertsons sprinkled among them.

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