Kenneth Gunn Independent

SBBN Wilma & Kenneth Gunn handing over the defibrillator to the Abbey Row Caretaker, Kate Borthwick.
SBBN Wilma & Kenneth Gunn handing over the defibrillator to the Abbey Row Caretaker, Kate Borthwick.

Selkirk needs 500 new houses to attract incoming industry and workers.

Newtown St Boswells’ village regeneration was going to provide houses too, but since Swan’s sold the mart, these are on hold.

Plans revealed last week would see the doctors’ surgery closed in Newtown and patients going to Melrose to visit their GPs.

It’s another case of centralisation being rolled out to make it more difficult to live in a rural area like ours.

Knowepark School is the largest primary in Selkirk, yet after 20 years of talk, a replacement is no closer for this building, which opened in 1881.

Scottish Borders Council is replacing schools built in the 1960s, but Selkirk is still waiting.

A line for a motorway from Carlisle to Edinburgh was published in 1934, including a bypass for Selkirk on the A7, and land was protected at that time for the line of the bypass.

All political parties have promised that Selkirk folk would get that bypass, but again we are no closer than we were in the middle of last century.

In fact, we are worse off than we were, with a badly thought-out streetscape which takes the service buses out of our historic Market Place but leaves no site to park a tour coach.

We can wish for more visitors, but where do they park and where do they eat?

Selkirkshire needs investment in infrastructure, in jobs, in schools where our young people can be educated and in getting back to local control over local services with less centralisation.