Borders parking rule must change for tourism to thrive, council warned

Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar.
Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar.

Drastic changes are needed to parking regulations in Selkirk if the town is to have any hope of attracting more tourists, according to Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar.

Mr Edgar, Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for roads and infrastructure, told Selkirk Community Council’s latest meeting: “Tourism is what we are trying to encourage, and if they cannot park in Selkirk, tourists are not going to stop.

“I want to see decriminalised parking brought in.

“There’s a report coming before the council shortly, and I am convinced it is needed. Not all other councillors are convinced, but they don’t have the same problems that we have.”

Scottish Borders Council rejected calls to implement its own parking enforcement regime almost two years ago, opting instead for putting pressure on the police after they withdrew traffic wardens from the region in 2014 to continue to enforce regulations.

Its council-led community action team, introduced last April, has since taken over that responsibilty.

“I do keep requesting parking management in Sekirk but there 3,000sq m of land in the Borders and only seven of them to cover it,” Mr Edgar added. “I think it’s the best way of managing traffic.”

Community council chairman Alistair Pattullo told him: “We as a community council entirely support you in that venture.”