I was disappointed to learn that the 1514 Club has announced the unveiling of its contentious new Hornshole plinth next Sunday. The decision to plough on regardless of public opinion is all the more perplexing, given that it now appears the town does not own the ground on which the plinth is to be situated, and the probable owner has profound reservations about the entire initiative.
Surely the cavalier actions of a few individuals cannot go unchallenged, particularly when so many people remain vehemently opposed to them?
My own views have already been documented, but some questions still require answering:
1. Why was someone other than a 1514 Club office bearer acting as its agent for the planning application?
2. Why was public notification only in The Southern Reporter and not, as one would expect, in the Hawick News?
3. Why was the date of the Planning Application Hearing only communicated to the Burnfoot Community Council chairman two days after the hearing date?
4. Why was the information board agreed on originally upgraded to a sizeable stonework without consulting the full membership?
5. Why, when public unrest was evident, did the 1514 president not keep his public promises of being keen to “get round the table to talk about it”, and “we need to have the support of other clubs and I will arrange to meet with them soon.”?
6. Why did the 1514 committee renege on its stated intention to have a public viewing of a replica before installation?
7. Why was there such reluctance on the part of the Callants’ Club chairman to furnish a letter of support for an application for listed status to be conferred on Hornshole?
8. Why, when the date of installation was decided, was the date of the 1514 Club’s
AGM put back till four days before, thus denying ordinary club members time to
object or suggest more appropriate locations?
9. Why, when it became clear in a strongly-worded letter to the 1514 secretary from the probable owner of Hornshole, that Hawick did not legally own the ground, was the whole matter not postponed?
10. Why can’t the 1514 Club admit it got it wrong, and rise in the people of Hawick’s estimation by taking a step back?