Folk left in the dark

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Folk musicians and fans came from all over the country to take part in the Selkirk Sessions festival over the weekend.

However, while the entertainment was top notch, it has been claimed this week that the performers’ Royal Burgh experience was soured.

The Scott’s Selkirk event on Saturday – in which the town is turned back in time to the days of Sir Walter Scott – also tends to bring in visitors and this event is now held alongside the folk festival.

And, for the musicians who provide the ambience for both events, the social side of camping in the town is a big draw.

Many were staying in the Victoria Park caravan park behind the newly-refurbished swimming pool and were less than impressed.

Festival organiser Davie Scott said: “There were no lights whatsoever and the folk were just stumbling around in the dark. If you pay £17 to put your caravan there, you’d expect some lighting.

“There are lights there, but none of them were switched on.

“And there were only three toilets – and the cubicles included the only showers available, so the design of that seems a bit rubbish.

“At the bottom of the steps, at the back of the swimming pool, was a skip, absolutely full, which completely blocks the stairs. It still looks like a building site.

“And because it was so dark, it was difficult to navigate around.”

Davie said he had also had feedback from the campers that while swimming was included, there was no sign outside the new pool that informed them of when it actually opened.

The campsite is run from the swimming pool reception by Live Borders.

Davie added: “Given that Live Borders are looking after all the leisure and cultural activities in the region, and here we are putting on a cultural event which attracts people from all over the country, it doesn’t make us look very good.”

The Wee Paper had a look at the site on Wednesday and the skip, piled full of building materials, was still at the bottom of the stairs.

We contacted Live Borders for comment, but no-one returned our calls.

See our picture special from the Scott’s Selkirk and Selkirk Sessions events on pages 6-7.