South Scotland

Scottish Borders Council gives ward boundary response

Hornshole monument Image copyright Billy McCrorie
Image caption The Battle of Hornshole is commemorated in a monument in Hawick

Scottish Borders Council will oppose some recommendations made by the Local Government Boundary Commission over changes to its wards.

However, it has accepted a change which would see Hawick lose the famous battle site of Hornshole.

The move is one community leaders have said they would continue to oppose.

While not accepting some details of the boundary plans, the council has conceded the number of councillors should fall - from 34 to 32.

There has been considerable debate of plans for Hawick which would see two three-member wards replaced with one four-member ward.

The council has accepted those proposals in principle with parts of the hinterland shorn off into an enlarged Jedburgh ward.

Moves to include Newcastleton in that area have been opposed with the recommendation that it remains part of Hawick.

Voted down

A similar argument to put Denholm in the Hawick ward was defeated.

Despite opposition from all of the Hawick councillors, and two motions of alternative proposals from Watson McAteer and Ron Smith, both asking for the historic battle site of Hornshole to stay within the Hawick boundary, councillors voted their initial plans through by 26 votes to five.

Community leaders have said they will continue to fight the loss of Hornshole - the site of a battle commemorated with a monument in the town.

In 1514 a group of Hawick youths defeated an English raiding party and captured their standard at Hornshole.

Hawick historian Ian Landles pointed out that the site was just outside the proposed Hawick ward - so a small "corridor" could include the site - without taking in any houses.

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