While campaigning for the upcoming by-election I have been struck by the depth of feeling townsfolk have expressed and their disappointment that, with one exception, their elected officials voted through the removal of garden waste collections.
The rushed implementation of this policy, paying scant, if any, regard to the wishes of the Hawick or Borders community is a disgrace and must be challenged.
A clean and tidy garden can be the pride and joy of a householder and I know that some elderly residents in particular have told me that they are worried that without asking for help, something they are naturally reluctant to do, they will be unable to maintain their hobby and passion.
The community recycling unit at Mansfield is ill-prepared for the change and although the staff are doing their best, the significant increase in vehicle and footfall is a recipe for frustration and disaster.
The Christmas period will prove to be an interesting time with Scottish Borders Council already declaring that they will not collect any trees left on the pavement. I am struggling to imagine people lugging them all the way to Mansfield.