Bid to redress gender balance of Hawick Common Riding Committee comes up Short

A move to “redress the gender balance” of Hawick Common Riding Committee was rebuffed on Monday night.

Wednesday, 16th October 2019, 2:25 pm
Marion Short, vice-chair of Hawick Community Council.

At a meeting of the town’s community council at the Town Hall, Marion Short put herself forward for the representative position, along with fellow community councillor Bert Wear.

There had to be a vote as only one place is allowed, but before this, Mrs Short told the chair: “The only reason I am standing for this is I feel the need to readdress the gender balance there, and get away from the stigma in town that it is a male-oriented committee.”

She failed in her bid by nine votes to three.

However, this week, Mrs Short said she was not too disappointed.

She said: “I am probably busy enough as vice-chair of the community council as well as the railway campaign group, so it may be a blessing.

“Bert is a common riding man and he’ll do a good job, and he’ll not be shy of giving his opinion.

“It was also good to see that so many new members of the committee were taking on jobs as well.”

She added: “It was good to see this week that there are three women in the nominations for the ward places on the committee.”

The ward rep nominations are now closed, with 15 people nominated over the six wards.

Burnfoot, Silverbuthall and Hermitage wards will be uncontested as there are two or less nominated for them, but Teviot, Weensland and Wilton will go to election as there are more than two nominees in each ward.

That public election will take place in the committee room in the Town Hall, on Monday, October 21, between 7pm and 8pm.

Members of the public, 18 and over, residing in each these wards can vote for up to two nominees in the ballot.

Nominations received are as follows:

Burnfoot – William Fletcher and Stuart Hay.

Hermitage – Ex-acting father Stuart Sharkey.

Silverbuthall – Ex-cornet Ross Nichol.

Teviot – Michael P. Robertson, ex-cornet Ian Whillans and Caroline Wilkinson.

Weensland – Cameron Knox, ex-cornet Ian T. Nichol, Frank Scott and William B. Smith.

Wilton – Catherine Elliott-Walker, ex-cornet Ross Gibson, ex-Hawick Community Council chairperson Gillian M. Morgan and David A. Oliver.