NEW CCTV cameras are to keep a watchful eye on goings on in Selkirk town centre after a planning bid was given the green light.

Scottish Borders Council has rubber-stamped an application from the Selkirk BIDS (Business Improvement Districts) organisation for three new CCTV units and the replacement of six other cameras which are regarded as “no longer fit for purpose”.

The cameras will not only be a viable deterrent to criminal activity but also provide evidence and intelligence to the police.

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Amongst the cameras to be installed is a ‘fisheye’ device which provides 360 degrees coverage and ‘a pan tilt zoom’, which is controlled remotely and also provides 360 degree rotation and 90 degree vertically.

Locations the cameras are to be installed include Mungo Park, Tower Street, High Street, the War Memorial and the Market Place.

In his report approving the application, Carlos Clarke, the council’s chief planning officer, says the bid would lead to a degree of “clutter in a Conservation Area” which he deemed “unfortunate”, but concluded: “Ultimately overall harm to the character and appearance of the Conservation Area is, I would conclude, unfortunate, but arguably balanced by the general public benefit.”