Party mansion boss accused of exposing Borderers to coronavirus risk

A Borders party mansion’s owner has been accused of putting villagers at risk of catching coronavirus by hosting groups of 20-plus revellers from parts of the UK with far higher infection rates.

Friday, 7th August 2020, 4:32 pm
Updated Friday, 7th August 2020, 4:41 pm
Greenloaning Mansion at West Linton, alias Linton Lodge.

Mike Cameron has been using Greenloaning in West Linton, also known as Linton Lodge, as a party destination for years, but neighbours already unhappy about the disruption and noise they claim it generates say they are now at the end of their tether.

Rentals were paused in compliance with coronavirus lockdown laws but resumed on Friday, July 10, and police have been called out to the property, in the Loan, three times since then in response to complaints from neighbours.

Nearby resident Jackie Ledger, 47, says she is fed up of hearing regular “noise, screaming and screeching” from the house, as well as loud music.

Ms Ledger and other locals are also concerned about visitors breaching social distancing rules intended to curb the spread of Covid-19, as the virus is also known.

John Thomson, another neighbour, said: “We thought we’d had a weekend off the other weekend and then a large group of guys turned up on Sunday, as usual making excessive noise.

“I went to speak to them, and it was 25 guys who had travelled up from London for a stag do.

“The people who use the house are also using the local facilities. They’re using the pub. It just goes completely against any common decency.”

Fellow neighbour Duncan McKenzie, 64, added: “For the past three weekends, there have been gatherings of up to 25 or 30.

“The police know about it and should be doing something.”

Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale MSP Christine Grahame is also concerned about the potential public health risk posed by the venue, saying: “My understanding is there were 25 to 30 men at a three-day party at this premises.

“There’s no way they’re complying with the government guidance, which is eight people from three families or with social distancing.

“The proprietor and those taking part should know better.

“It’s dreadful for that community. It was dreadful for them before all of this with the numbers of people that were coming up, but that’s compounded by lack of Covid security, and it puts the wider community at risk.”

A lawyer for Mr Cameron, 58, also director of Edinburgh’s Dominion Cinema, said: “The complaints alleged are not accepted nor justified.

“Mr Cameron, in letting the property, has always and will continue to abide by the Covid-19 rules and principles for self-catering accommodation.”