Heated Hawick Community Council meeting sees status quo continue

Hawick Community Council chairman Gillian Morgan.
Hawick Community Council chairman Gillian Morgan.

The status quo is set to continue at Hawick Community Council after members elected office bearers at its annual general meeting this week.

Gillian Morgan and Graham Marshall were re-elected chair and vice chair respectively at the packed meeting, held in the Lesser Town Hall last night.

In a repeat of February’s proceedings – when members voted in new office bearers following a by-election in January – Mrs Morgan beat former vice chairman Cameron Knox to the chairmanship by seven votes to five.

Mr Knox was then proposed for vice chair, but narrowly lost out to Mr Marshall by six votes to five.

Keith Morgan will continue as treasurer and Pauline Tottman remains in the role of secretary.

However, questions were raised about the amount of notice given for the AGM, with members of the public pointing out there was no mention of it in the April minutes.

Speaking prior to the elections, Mr Knox said: “The agenda was published on Monday of last week. Until that point I did not know it was the AGM tonight, or that the status quo (of office bearers) was on the agenda.”

Marion Short, who chaired the community council from 2012 to 2017, drew a rousing round of applause when, speaking over Mrs Morgan from the public gallery, she stood up to thank Mr Knox for his service.

Mrs Short said: “A round of applause, please, for Cameron Knox who has served this community for several years.”

With members of the public refused the opportunity to raise any town issues, much to their chagrin, the meeting was closed after just 15 minutes.

Insisting the session was Hawick Community Council’s annual general meeting, “not a public forum”, Mrs Morgan said the agenda had been dealt with.

The next meeting is due to take place on Monday, June 10.