What ho Huttonian!
Here's an exclusive ahead of Thursdays' Berwickshire. :There was widespread shock and panic on Saturday 14 January as over 300** Coldstreamers abandoned the habit of a lifetime and expressed an opinion.
Marching from the Market Square along Leet Street, over the Irish Bridge and up the hill to the Cottage Hospital, strong opinions were expressed although oaths were not uttered.
The march was led by a combined Berwickshire pipe band, with players from the Coldstream, Duns, Eyemouth and Lees Mill bands.
The crowd was addressed, moderately well, by Euan Robson MSP and very well by Christine Graham MSP. The view remains that the closure is part of a centralising agenda on the part of the health board to gather all health-care in the Gala/Melrose conurbation and so consign the Merse to even further obscurity. Jedburgh Cottage Hospital is next, then, presumably, Duns, Kelso and all other towns. A great pity for those without cars and yet further evidence of the short-sightedness of health planners, encouraging more and more travel just as oil dries up.
Questions emanating from the march were: 1. Why did the march justify such a heavy police presence? This was hardly a picket of miners, see photo *for just how heavy the presence was, and:
2. Why did the police not allow the marchers to walk along the High Street. Is inconveniencing traffic in January more of a priority than allowing the _expression of opinions? If so, the Streamer looks forward to the annual humbug of the Flodden Ride-out being cancelled to stop 600 horses really inconveniencing
I am endebted to our special correspondent for this page 3 scoop. **He/she has added that 600 people turned out rather than the 300 originally reported and as this is about half the town's population this was an impressive indication of public opinion. A Police spokesman has commented that a very light police presence was not available because of the very light policeman being on other duties.