John Lamont is Conservative MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk

Galashiels Veterans Breakfast Club

I was really pleased to pay a visit to the Veterans Breakfast Club in the British Legion in Gala recently.

There are a number of breakfast clubs across the Scottish Borders and they are an opportunity for ex-service personnel to socialise, provide support for each other and find out more about the services that are available to help locally. Armed Forces personnel who are currently serving are also welcome and it is free to attend, although you are asked for a donation towards the food.

It was great to see the Gala club so well attended and to hear about some of the good work the council and local charities are doing to support veterans in the Borders. When men and women leave the Armed Forces, it can be difficult for them to get resettled into civilian life. I’d certainly encourage local veterans to pop along to their club to speak to like-minded people.

A lot of great work goes on in the Borders supporting our veterans, led by Councillor John Greenwell, our Champion for Armed Forces and Veterans. Further information about the breakfast clubs can be found on Scottish Borders Council’s website and on Facebook.

Transport Survey

The Scottish Government’s recently published Borders Transport Study, I think it is fair to say, can be described as a bit of a damp squib. The report essentially copies what was in the draft report published two years ago and just lists a series of options for improving transport links in the Borders. Frankly, I could have saved Transport Scotland the trouble and produced this list myself three years ago when the work began. What the Borders needs is action, not more warm words.

What makes this worse is that the First Minister came down to Hawick in 2016 weeks before the Scottish Parliament election promising a full feasibility study into extending the Borders Railway. Three years later, all we have is a suggestion from Transport Scotland that the issue is considered at some, unspecified date.

Unfortunately, this is classic SNP – promise the world just before an election then kick the issue in to the long grass.

The Scottish Government needs to stop writing reports and instead get on with the vital projects we need in the Borders like bringing the Borders Railway on to Hawick, Newcastleton and Carlisle, dualling the A1 and delivering Reston station

Advice Surgeries

My next round of advice surgeries will be taking place on Monday, April 8. I’ll be holding them in Newcastleton at 9am, Hawick at 10.30am, Galashiels at noon, Lauder at 2pm, Jedburgh at 3.30pm and Coldstream at 4.45pm. As always, no appointment is necessary, so if there is an issue I can help with or which you’d like to speak to me about, do come along.

I continue to be surprised by the numbers of people who turn up to my advice surgeries. Even with all the modern forms of communication some people simply prefer a face to face discussion, so I’ll continue to hold these surgeries for as long as my constituents want them.

In the meantime, if you want to get in touch, please feel free to email me on or call my constituency office in Hawick on 01450 375948.