Flood walls needs repairs

An aerial view of Selkirk's new flood defences.
An aerial view of Selkirk's new flood defences.

Builders are set to return to Selkirk’s £31.4m flood protection scheme to carry out repairs just four months after it was officially unveiled.

Glasgow-based contractor RJ McLeod will return to the Ettrick Water in the next few weeks to carry out work to concrete coping on parts of the new walls.

The flood defences have been safeguarding the town from damage caused by the bursting of the Ettrick Water’s banks since they were unveiled at the end of February.

The scheme was launched in March 2014 following six years of planning and design work.

Now Souters are being warned that they can expect to see RJ McLeod operatives in action again as they attend to landscaping and ongoing maintenance.

A Scottish Borders Council spokesperson confirmed, however, that none of the concrete copings need to be replaced at any location.

He said: “In four locations across the scheme, the top-surface finish of the concrete coping to the flood defence wall has deteriorated and, as such, cosmetic remedial works are required to improve the appearance.

“The structural integrity of the wall and the standard of protection provided are not affected by these superficial issues.

“This remedial work will be undertaken by RJ McLeod as part of their ongoing snagging works programme, which will be concluded by the end of this year.

“These snagging works are normal for projects of this size and complexity.

“The scheme is delighted to have again been of assistance in helping Selkirk Common Riding.”

Alistair Pattullo, chairman of Selkirk Community Council, told the Wee Paper: “I think it is like any major project where there’s a snaggging period where anything that needs to be looked at is repaired, so I am not surprised by that.

“I think it is understandable given the reasons that we were given for the problems, whereby the weather was not suitable when the concrete was poured.

“I would rather see them carry out the works, and I am glad that it is going to be done soon and in appropriate weather.”

The contractor is also being asked to have another look at landscaping work carried out around Victoria Park, Raeburn Place and Corbie Terrace, including relocating a fence to improve visibility, to address issues raised by residents.