South Scotland

Hawick town centre pedestrianisation suggested

Hawick High Street Image copyright Jonathan Thacker
Image caption A councillor has suggested taking cars out of the heart of Hawick to encourage more shoppers

A pedestrianisation plan for the heart of a Borders town could help to boost shopper numbers, it has been claimed.

Councillor Tom Weatherston suggested the move for Hawick High Street at Scottish Borders Council's executive committee.

He said he was convinced the move would encourage more people to use the shops in the town.

A council spokesperson said there had been no recent viability surveys into pedestrianising Hawick.

Mr Weatherston, who represents Kelso and district, made his suggestion during a presentation of an action plan for Hawick.

"I was on my travels again a few weeks ago, at various places, the busiest places I visited were those with no cars on the streets, and no streets, just pedestrian areas and shops," he said.

"We need to get more cars off the High Street and open up the High Street for pedestrians."

'Works elsewhere'

He said he was convinced that would encourage more people to visit.

"If that was a huge pedestrian area, I'm sure it would bring folk into the High Street, and shop in the shops, and only allow vehicles for public transport like taxis," he said.

"It certainly works elsewhere.

"The walking part of the street, to me, attracts folk in, because they don't have the risk of getting run over."

Scottish Borders Council's executive member for business and economic development, Mark Rowley, said it was something that could be considered.

"That's very probably something that the Hawick working group might want to look at," he said.

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