NOMINATIONS for the forthcoming Selkirkshire byelection opened last week.

And the Conservative who narrowly failed to be voted in during the 2017 election, Trevor Adams, has already put himself forward.

Two independent candidates, Kenneth Gunn and Caroline Penman, have also declared ahead of the closing date on Monday, January 22.

And it is expected that the other major parties, including the SNP, Labour, Greens and Lib-Dems, will also put forward candidates.

The byelection was called towards the end of last year following the resignation of Michelle Ballantyne.

The former leader of the Conservatives in the Borders was appointed as a list MSP in the days after being returned as a councillor with a 27 per cent share of the first vote to retake her seat at Newtown St Boswells in May.

After six months of holding down two jobs, Ms Ballantyne announced her resignation at the start of December.

Mr Adams was narrowly edged out of taking the third and final Selkirkshire seat in May by Independent Gordon Edgar.

Elaine Thornton-Nicol, after taking 22 per cent of the first votes, won the second seat.

Kenneth Gunn, who has previously represented Selkirkshire for the SNP, finished fifth last year on his Independent ticket.

Mr Gunn told us: “Selkirk and Selkirkshire has been one voice down on the council since the elections last May after the former councillor, Michelle Ballantyne, decided to accept a list seat at the Scottish parliament on the day she was elected to the council.

"At a time of so much change and so much upheaval at council level its is disappointing that a situation like this has left the Royal and Ancient Burgh of Selkirk and its county without a strong and experienced lead as we face changes which may not all be for the better."

Selkirk Chamber of Trade chair Caroline Penman has also thrown her hat into the ring.

And she will also stand as an Independent at the byelection on Thursday, February 22.

She said: "I will be putting myself forward as an Independent candidate for the upcoming Selkirkshire by-election in February.

"I believe it is time to put people before politics."

Scottish Borders Council will use the same single transferable vote system as last year to elect the new member for Selkirkshire when the polls open on Thursday, February 22.

Voting will also be open to all 16- and 17-year-olds in the ward as was the case in the previous election.

A spokesman for Scottish Borders Council told us: "If you’re not on the register of electors you can’t vote - make sure you are registered by midnight on Tuesday, February 6. Visit to register online."

To vote by post you need to apply by 5pm on Wednesday, February 7.

An electronic count will take place at Scottish Borders Council Headquarters, on the day after voting.

The Border Telegraph will publish a full list of candidates following the closure of nominations later this month.