A CALL for CCTV has been made to “act as a deterrent” against potential anti-social behaviour at Peebles Swimming Pool.

The leisure facility finally reopened in August last year – almost 14 months after a blaze on its roof which forced its closure.

It was the result of wilful fire-raising, where a bin was set alight.

When members of Scottish Borders Council’s (SBC) decision-making Executive Committee met recently they were presented with a report setting out the lessons learned from the incident.

As a result, a review is being undertaken across the region on how bins are managed and stored.

This is to focus initially on ‘high risk’ buildings such as schools, followed by those where external organisations occupy and manage council-owned buildings.

Robin Tatler, an independent councillor for Tweeddale East, told the meeting: “Despite the fact that you can do all the preventative measures you like, this was the result of criminal activity and the only way you can stop criminal activity is to stop the people involved.

“One of the things we could do though is improve our CCTV coverage and clearly that is something we are going to be doing in the programme, and my request would be that we move as quickly as possibly as we can on that.

“It would at least act as a deterrent.

“It was a great loss to the local community and took much longer to resolve than it should have, being out of action for as long as it was.”

The closure had a major impact on leisure provision in the town, particularly for the 580 children on the Peebles Learn to Swim programme.

The total repair bill for bringing the popular Live Borders-operated pool back into use was £1.42million.

Conservative councillor Tom Weatherston added: “We could have repaired the damage and nothing but the damage, but the council took the opportunity to refurbish the whole building and I think it’s important we get that message across.

“We have got a much better build, a much better swimming pool, on the back of it. It was a disaster it happened but the result is very good.”

In his report, John Curry, SBC’s director of infrastructure and environment, wrote: “On the date of the fire, the bin was positioned against the building and not within the enclosure.

“Post incident, it is recommended that a review is undertaken across the operational and leased estate on how bins are managed and stored to prevent this type of scenario occurring again elsewhere within the Borders.”