‘Fantastic opportunity’ for Hawick community project

The waste land at the site of the former Wilton South and St Margaret's Church
The waste land at the site of the former Wilton South and St Margaret's Church

Ideas are being sought to rejuvenate the derelict grounds of the former Wilton South and St Margaret’s church in Commercial Road.

Councillors Watson McAteer and Stuart Marshall are keen to hear from anyone who would like to see the area developed for a community project and are encouraging townsfolk to get in touch.

The old church was demolished 13 years ago at a cost to Scottish Borders Council of more than £200,000, none of which has been recovered from the owners.

The overgrown state of the ground was reported by the Hawick News 12 months ago and this resulted in the council agreeing to clear the area to help improve its appearance for nearby residents.

Commenting on this new initiative, Councillor McAteer told the Hawick News:
“Scottish Borders Council has managed to track down the owners of this property
who are currently living abroad.

“They are considering applying for a compulsory purchase order to take possession of the land in pursuance of the outstanding debit, but will only do so if a suitable community or resident-based scheme can be established to safeguard the future of the property.”

Councillor Marshall added: “This is a fantastic opportunity and Councillor McAteer and I would be delighted to hear from any organisation that would like to consider developing this piece of ground into something useful for the community or nearby residents.

“Anything will be considered and as long as the plans meet the council’s scope, then we can press ahead with taking over this derelict piece of ground and turn it into a useful local amenity.”

If you have an idea you’d like to put forward, Councillor Marshall can be con-
tacted on 07767 323189 and Councillor McAteer on 07814 292395.