As your community council we want to introduce ourselves and let you know that we are here to represent your interests. Let us share with you what our role is.
The Community Council is in being to ascertain, co-ordinate and express to the Scottish Borders Council, as the Local Authority for this area, and to the other public authorities, including the Scottish and UK parliaments, the views of the community we represent in relation to matters for which those authorities are responsible. Also we make known within the community such information as may be received from the Scottish Borders Council and other public authorities. We will take such action in the interests of our community as appears to us to be expedient and practicable. The Community Council is a statutory body, is non-party in politics and non-discriminatory, and is made up of twelve elected representatives who give of their time on a voluntary basis and will represent all persons in its area.
One of our main and statutory functions is to comment to the planning authority on planning applications within our area. This function covers everything from the erection of signage to construction of a new hotel or housing estate. As you can imagine this takes up a significant amount of members time with the majority of applications being dealt with by a sub group of members. Only controversial or difficult applications are dealt with by the full membership. We are also asked to respond to consultation documents on a wide range of issues affecting our community. This could be water provision or even rail or air transport services.
One area that the council has been involved in recently is to push for more investment locally to improve the environment in which we live and to encourage activity which will provide employment. Our area is world famous for the high quality knitwear manufactured in local mills. However this industry is in decline with many of the major employers no longer in business. We are actively seeking to encourage and promote tourist-related businesses to set up in the area. The development of the hill walk to Pirn Hill Fort, one recent example of a project where we were actively involved, now complements the facilities at Robert Smails Print Works, St Ronans Wells and Traquair House and are well worth a visit. Add to this the two golf courses and Mountain Bike course within our area and there is much to attract locals, tourists and provide employment. The community council area lends itself to those interested in walking, whether by the river or over the hills. We have been active in trying to develop walks, paths and cycleways in the area in recent months and many interesting projects are in the pipeline.
It is difficult to convey all that the community council is involved in but if you have any issue that you feel we can assist with please make it known to us. We are here to help. It may be that you have skills that could benefit the community. We would be interested to hear from you or see you at our monthly meetings.
If you need to make contact with the community council please telephone the number below:
George Brown, Chairman 01896 831192