Former policeman finds a new beat after election win


Former Borders police commander Watson McAteer wrestled one of the three Hawick and Denholm seats on the council from the Tories as an independent.

Thursday’s by-election resulted from the death, in February, of Zandra Elliot who was elected as a Conservative in 2007.

Mr McAteer, who stood without success as a Lib Dem in 2012, topped a seven-candidate poll. Conservative Trevor Adams finished second, although his party’s share of the vote increased.

At stage one, the count was: McAteer 732; Adams 622; Ian Turnbull (Lib Dem) 450; Harry Stoddart (SNP) 419; Marion Short (Ind) 326; Davie Paterson (Ind) 250 and Craig Bryson (Ind) 74. Bryson was excluded at stage one and Paterson at stage two. The final result was: McAteer 803; Adams 638; Turnbull 485; Stoddart 461 and Short 385. Turnout was 39.25 per cent.

Councillor McAteer joins Alastair Cranston (SNP) and Stuart Marshall (Ind) on the three-member ward.

He commented: “During campaigning, a great variety of issues were raised and I look forward to working with my fellow councillors to tackle them. My priority is to be accessible to all the community.”