Hawick councillor fears accident in town's Wilton Lodge Park due to misinformed drivers

Concern is growing for folks taking a stroll in Hawick’s Wilton Lodge Park as wayward motorists claim their sat nav systems are directing them onto a pedestrian walkway.

By Paul Kelly
Monday, 23rd August 2021, 12:44 pm
Updated Monday, 23rd August 2021, 12:44 pm
Hawick Councillor Davie Paterson at the Henderson Shelter in Wilton Park. (Photo: BILL McBURNIE)
Hawick Councillor Davie Paterson at the Henderson Shelter in Wilton Park. (Photo: BILL McBURNIE)

There have been increasing reports of cars, vans and even mini-buses entering the avenue beside the park’s Henderson Shelter – an area which is for pedestrians-only.

It has resulted in concern that townsfolk out for a stroll in the award-winning park, which underwent a £3.6m regeneration four years ago, faced ‘grave danger’.

The issue has been taken up by Hawick and Hermitage councillor Davie Paterson, who has asked officers at Scottish Borders Council to look into it.

Mr Paterson has called for better signage and the placement of a collapsible bollard at the location.

He said: “It has all become a bit harem scarem up there.

“I regularly walk around Wilton Lodge Park with my dog, but over the last few months I have noticed more and more cars trying to drive down the avenue and hoping to get out at the bottom, several of the drivers have told me that it was their sat nav that directed them this way.

"I have written to officers about this asking if there could be more signage and possibly a collapsible bollard to deter drivers from using this pedestrian walkway.

"If action is not taken I fear that it’s only a matter of time before there is nasty accident. Several irate constituents have asked me to make a big thing about this. They tell me that you shouldn’t be in grave danger when you are just going for a nice walk up the park.”

Mr Paterson added: "There was a mini-bus along there two Sundays ago and they thought they were allowed to park next to the Chinese shelter, but they’re not, it’s not a road and I’ve turned a lot of cars back and one guy got really aggressive towards me.

"A disabled person can park behind the museum but these vehicles are coming right down and the signage isn’t deterring them.

"If they put in a collapsible bollard workmen can take it down if they need to get through in an emergency.

"I’m not sure if it is just driver error or if there is actually a sat nav issue. We need to look into that and the council can take that up with the powers that be.”