Confusion over ownership sees Broomhill road go to pot

Elliot Henderson and his dog Hoover on the road up to Broomhill, Selkirk.
Elliot Henderson and his dog Hoover on the road up to Broomhill, Selkirk.

Calls are going out to council chiefs to sort out a road blighted by potholes after apparently being negelected for almost quarter of a century.

Selkirk residents are claiming the half-mile stretch of road up to Broomhill Farm has been left to go to pot since it was adopted by Scottish Borders Council and is now in such a bad way that taxis refuse to go up it.

Elliot Henderson, who lives at the top of the Broomhill road alongside three sets of neighbours, says the potholes there are up to 48in wide and 5in deep and have left it impassable for some vehicles.

In June 1996, residents of the four households there at the time, paid around £47,000 to Scottish Borders Council to take over responsibility for the single-track road, but it has been left to go to rack and ruin since.

“From that time, we have received no maintenance,” Mr Henderson said. “It was never surface-dressed, and because of that, the frost has gotten in.

“If you go up there on a wet day, the water cascades down the road. I have to clean out the gully myself.

“It’s like a forgotten road. Everybody is complaining. We never see a gritter, we don’t have any street lights, and no one ever calls us back.

“It’s like we are banging our heads against a brick wall.”

Elliot’s daughter Tracey Keddie added that visitors to Broomhill Equestrian Centre, run by Anne Cranston, are also suffering.

“Anne has customers coming up that road daily, and they are having to put up with the state of it every time,” she said. “It’s beyond a joke.

“It’s in a worse state than what it was when we approached the council to see if they would adopt the road.

“This is not just 24 years later that we’ve decided to sort it out. We have been trying on many occasions to try to get someone out to get it fixed.”

Mr Henderson added: “Six weeks before Christmas, we even had a Scottish Borders Council representative knock on our new neighbour’s door wanting to know who as responsible for the road because it was a disgrace and he had received complaints from Royal Mail and refuse men.”

“It’s a health and safety issue now.

“If I go out with my wife, we have to change our shoes and get dropped off at the bottom of the road to walk up because taxis refuse to drive up that road now.”

Selkirkshire councillor Gordon Edgar, the authority’s executive member for roads and infrastructure, said: “I know there has been confusion between the council and residents. I know it has been adopted.

“I went up and had a look at it and have gone back to them. I agree it’s in a bad way.

“We will certainly try and do something. It looks like a complete resurface job from top to bottom.

“As far as I know, it should be on the priority list and it is not, so I will be checking that.”