Why caravan site is open to travellers only

A row over the travellers’ site at Selkirk’s Victoria Park rumbled on at a virtual meeting of the town’s community council on Monday.

By Kevin Janiak
Thursday, 13th August 2020, 9:50 am
Travellers at Selkirk's Victoria Park.
Travellers at Selkirk's Victoria Park.

Selkirkshire councillor Caroline Cochrane asked why the travellers are able to stay at the site but holidaymakers are not allowed.

She said: “People are wanting to come to Selkirk, but they can’t because they don’t have anywhere to stay.”

Fellow councillor Gordon Edgar, who has been liaising with the travellers, told her that Scottish Borders Council is obliged by law to provide somewhere for travellers to stayto stop them moving from site to site during the coronavirus lockdown now easing.

He said: “They are as scared of Covid-19 as we are. Their facilities are being paid for by the Scottish Government, not the council, but I guess that means taxpayers are paying for them.”

Ms Cochrane then asked why the site is still closed to other people.

Mr Edgar replied: “The site is closed because the swimming pool is closed.

“It’s not viable for Live Borders to open the caravan park on its own.

“The leisure centre and swimming pool, as with all other swimming pools in the region, are unlikely to be reopened this year.

“Live Borders feels that it wouldn’t be in their interest or the community’s interest to do so. That might change, but that’s the situation.”