South Scotland

Scottish Borders public alcohol ban by-law fate in the balance

Beer Image copyright PA
Image caption The by-law would ban public alcohol consumption in parts of the Borders

A Scottish council is being asked to decide the fate of proposed by-laws banning the consumption of alcohol in public places.

The local authority in the Borders last considered the issue more than four-and-a-half years ago.

A report this week will ask councillors if they want to proceed with draft by-laws drawn up under that process.

Otherwise they could drop the proposals entirely or start a new consultation on the need for the legislation.

The council first resolved to introduce the by-laws in 2007 but progress since then has proved slow.

Police support

Consultation was carried out in 2013/14 which found about 56% of people in favour - with exemptions for common ridings, summer festivals and New Year's Eve.

There was support from the communities of Eyemouth, Coldingham, Galashiels town centre, Hawick, Jedburgh and Newtown St Boswells.

NHS Borders and Police Scotland also back the by-laws.

However, given the length of time which has passed, the council is being asked to decide if the process should be continued, renewed or dropped entirely.

A meeting of Scottish Borders Council will debate the plans on Thursday.

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