Final four hoping to represent Souters

Elaine Thornton-Nicol and Michelle Ballantyne.
Elaine Thornton-Nicol and Michelle Ballantyne.

The nominations for the upcoming local government elections on Thursday, May 4, have been announced by Scottish Borders Council.

And within the list of 75 candidates are nine for the Selkirkshire ward.

Nancy Norman and Scott Redpath.

Nancy Norman and Scott Redpath.

The Wee Paper caught up with five of those last week and spoke to the other half of your hopeful candidates this week.

Scott Redpath, 52, is standing on behalf of the Scottish Labour Party.

He currently works in the Selkirk Co-op store and is also the steward representative for the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers for the Borders.

Mr Redpath said: “I want to get some investment into the area, especially for young people, not just for Selkirkshire but for the whole of the Borders. I want to see well-paid jobs brought to the town, not the low-paid jobs we have at the moment.

“We need a better bus service in the Borders too, especially for the rural areas as this is vital for people getting to work and around.”

Mr Redpath has lived in Selkirk for the past 11 years was born and bred in the Borders, previously living in Kelso.

Elaine Thornton-Nicol, 48, is standing on behalf of the Scottish National Party.

She has lived in the Borders since 1998, although her connection goes back to 1986, when her family moved here.

She currently lives in Newtown and is chairwoman of Newtown and Eildon Community Council.

She said: “I have supported and mentored the Dog Friendly Newtown group and enjoy helping the Newtown in Bloom group, all with the aim of improving life in the community. If elected, I will relish the challenge of delivering local priorities for individuals, Selkirkshire and the Borders.

“I will work in partnership with other councillors to get the very best for Selkirkshire. I intend to hold regular surgeries throughout the ward. This will give local people the opportunity to talk to me face to face in order to bring forward issues that they feel are relevant to the local area.”

Nancy Norman, 69, is standing as a Liberal Democrat candidate, having previously served as an independent councillor at Scottish Borders Council from 2003 to 2007.

She has lived and worked in the Borders for over 30 years as a Church of Scotland minister and is now partially retired.

She said: “If elected, I promise that I shall do my very best to carry on the fine tradition of Liberal Democrat achievement for the Borders and Selkirkshire.

“In particular, I will fight to support the campaign for a bypass for Selkirk and pursue vigorously the provision of much-needed affordable and extra-care sheltered housing in Selkirkshire.

“I will also fight to restore local decision-making and to seek to reverse the SNP Government’s incessant centralisation agenda of stripping so many powers from local communities.”

Current Selkirkshire councillor Michelle Ballantyne,54, is standing for re-election.

Mrs Ballantyne, leader of the Scottish Conservative and Unionists on the council, believes that her background in business, health and social care is an asset as a councillor.

Mrs Ballantyne said: “Whether negotiating a solution to a problem, ploughing through technical planning documents or rallying a clean-up in the town, representing the area I live in has been a real honour.

“It’s not what we say that matters, it’s what we actually do. Making a difference is what counts.

“The council is facing significant challenges, and it is going to require experienced, clear-thinking councillors to meet those challenges head on.”

The other five candidates for the Selkirkshire ward are Kenneth Gunn (Independent); David Black (Independent); Dr Barbra Harvie (Scottish Green Party) and Gordon Edger (Independent) and Trevor Adams (Scottish Conservative and Unionist).

The elections take place on Thursday, May 4.