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Robert Fortune (1812-1880) - was born in Edrom in the Scottish Borders and after a spell at the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh moved to the Horticultural Society's Garden at Chiswick in London in 1840. He was sent on a plant and seed collecting expedition to China and brought back not only tea (which allowed the introduction of the plant to India) and roses but also Peking peaches from the garden of the Emperor. Other discoveries among 200 species on five journeys to China and Japan included Anemone Japonica, Dicentra Spectabilis (seen here), Mahonia Japonica, Lilium Auratum and Primula Japonica.

Margaret S Dunlop - 2 December 2020

All these tourists (who normally would head off to Spain for their hols) coming into the area and wild camping would be very welcome if they would take their rubbish back home with them. We need somebody to control the tourists and that is what National Parks are good at.

Peter Neuberger - 21 September 2020

"Uncontrolled" is the key word in E. Mitchell's comment below. It should be remembered that prime motivation for setting up the Cairngorms and Lomond & Trossachs National Parks was to control the visitor access to those regions. Under the "right to roam" legislation in Scotland, wild camping and unfetterred access to the countryside is perfectly legal - except in the National Parks, where they have the powers to pass bylaws controlling access to the countryside, and to appoint Rangers to manage that access.

Tourists and visitors are to be encouraged, especially in the countryside where tourism related industries are an increasingly important part of the rural economy. But good car parks, public toilets, and facilities are a key part of managing the tourists so that it is a pleasurable experience for the tourists and those that live in the area. National Parks can do that in a way other organisations cannot.

Geoffrey Kolbe - 5 August 2020

The problems encountered at present in other national parks and on NC 500 would make me very uncertain about wether the benefits would out weigh the negatives of a national park. There are numerous reports at present re. Uncontrolled camping and mess associated. Parking and road congestion, poor infrastructure,beauty spots overwhelmed by sheer volume of visitor.

E. Mitchell - 5 August 2020

I have been to a few community council meetings in my area (none of late due to work commitments) however i was disgusted at the attitude and lack of regard to the working people in the area who where concerned regarding all of the extra rules and regulations a National Park would bring. All concerns seemed to be met with deaf ears and a four worded answer - "Don't be so stupid!" As a working person within the proposed boundary area i am very concerned that should this proposed National Park come into being my livelihood will disappear. I have spent years building my cattle numbers up however what National Park have you been to where you see cattle roaming around?

I have read Part 1 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003, Guidance for Local Authorities and National Park Authorities and as i understand it if there is any core path or right of way running through your land the local authorities have powers, by written notice, which require a landowner to remove anything which they consider might be likely to cause injury to anyone exercising access rights and as i am a farmer i will use cattle as an example. We cannot position or leave at large any animal in an area where the public regularly exercise their access rights so does this mean that i must get rid of my cows so that anyone can roam freely through my land ? And if so who will compensate me on my loss not just of livestock but earnings too not just for the single animals but for all of the potential calfs that they may have had over their lifetime?

Can this proposed National Park embrace an unlimited number of visitors while retaining what made it in the first place? The rise in tourist numbers will also see a rise in vehicles but lack of parking amenities means that cars will be abandoned on road sides causing chaos to the traffic including local people who just want to get on with their day-to-day life.

Some people do not care how they leave the landscape after they have finished with it. After all they do not have to live here, but we do! More tourists will push others to seek solitude elsewhere. The more people there are in an area, the more police there will have to be in the area and where will they come from? thin air? Where does the funding for a National Park come from? The EU? what will happen after Brexit?

There are so many questions that are unanswered and after reading this page the disadvantages are not looked into much at all..

- Damage to the landscape i.e Litter, erosion, fires, disturbance to livestock, vandalism etc
- Traffic congestion & pollution
- Local goods can become expensive because tourists will pay more
- Shops stock products for tourists & not everyday goods needed by locals
- Demand for holiday homes making housing too expensive for local people
- Demand for development of more shops and hotels
- Any job in the tourism industry is mainly seasonal which are low paid and have long hours.

Another disadvantage everywhere tourists go wether it is a National Park or not is that all work is seasonal. While the shops and services thrive in the warm summer months trade will begin to reduce to just the local people when the weather turns cold. This means that some shops can't survive and shut down altogether. Jobs in the tourism industry are often low paid with long hours which means because of the rising house prices within a National Park even the people who work there cannot afford local house prices wether they be renting or buying a property.

I object to the designation of a Borders National Park as in my opinion the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. People come to visit this area for it's peace and tranquility. They come here to 'get away from it all', city goers who just want to hide away in a peaceful quiet scenic area with very little mobile phone signal so that they cannot be disturbed by their busy day to day lives back home, so that they can 'recharge their batteries' ready for their busy schedule awaiting them when they return home. If this area was to be designated as a National Park all of that would be spoilt as this area would become a busy haven full of tourists and would no longer be a peaceful, tranquil place to visit or live. It would no longer be the place that the campaign for a Scottish Borders National Park currently describes. There are very few places like this where people can come to get away from it all, it is unique! There is already a National Park right next door if anyone wishes to visit one while staying in this area. My livelihood is my life and i do not wish for this to be destroyed. All of the years of blood, sweat, tears and hard work i have put into my cattle may vanish if i have to get rid of them as there is a right of way running through my land. A National Park is a farce which only serves and cares about the tourists and not the people who actually have to live within it's boundaries with all of the rules and regulations that go on top of the ones that we already have! It serves the privaliged few but not the many.

Angela Graham - 17 July 2019

I would question the need for a Borders park. The Borders is one of the most beautiful parts of the country. This has evolved over the years without major interference and I see no reason to start now.

1. The cost. it will cost several millions to set up and run. It appears the main objective is to promote tourism; if this is so the money would be better spent supporting existing bodies which already promote tourism.

2. Regulatory Burden. I believe it would put another layer of bureaucracy on to what is already a well regulated area adding additional cost for no gain.

3. Tourism. The beauty of the Borders is it's peaceful countryside. Putting to much emphasis on tourism could end up destroying what we have now.

4. Well run with enthusiastic people it could work but as with many of these organizations, over time, the wrong people end up running them and the whole objective becomes lost.

For those reasons I object to a Borders National Park

Stephen Withers - 27 Jan 2019

The Eastern Scottsh Bordrrs should be included in this feasibility study and should be included in the new park. We have fantastic country side History, and Coast line. We have the St Abbs Head bird sanctuary and Harbour , Eyemouth Historic Harbour and Town, Burnmouth Harbour , Great Towns and villages ,the Home of the Coldstream Guards at Coldstream the River Tweed winding its way through the Borders . The Eastern Borders is a fogotten part of scotland yet is an area of outstanding natural beauty . The Eastern Borders are part of the borders and should be included in the new National park.

Ken Barrett - 11 January 2019

I think that this is a great idea and would support it wholly. My only reservations would be that we would need to have a better transport infrastructure and make thecurrent trainline run the full length from Edinburgh to Carlisle as it did originally.

Tony Brown - 8 January 2019

Some thoughts following the Consultants Appraisal. Any submission to Scot. Gov. does of course need to underpin some economic growth and employment benefits - that is fully disclosed in the Strategy doc. However what are we trying to create here? We are wanting to preserve a unique part of Scotland for a variety of reasons, not least the geography and biodiversity - much of this is important because it has not historically been exploited. The dangers are that we go beyond an area of natural beauty and simply create an overcrowded playground for tourists with all the collateral damage that brings, and costs to existing householders to sustain this.

It has to be slow progress involving the improvement of existing infrastructure - Border Railway is a prime example . Road improvements to the major arterial links bring additional issues - more traffic - more commuters - higher house prices and household spend concentrated in larger urban areas which become more accessible e.g. Midlothian. We need to see SBNP assist and underpin the strategic requirements of existing businesses as a first step - providing attractive working conditions to keep local employment and encourage incomers/entrepreneurs.

Statistics reveal a high percentage of older age groups - we may not be able to materially change that certainly in the medium term - this has to be a common issue to other rural areas. That is not to say that a SBNP can not play a major part in making the Borders an attractive area for retirement . This could encourage creative Care Home projects linked to sporting activities and mental stimulation through historical, social and learning activities. An ageing population is not unique to the Borders.

Everyone is not going to be satisfied whatever the outcome - there are always too many interested groups of people - but good corporate governance and a diversified/representative Board to administer the SBNP should help to bring everyone together - this is well highlighted in the document.

The big dangers are a big commitment of funding centrally which finds its way into projects which are not long term sustainable. While difficult to administer a case by case approach will allow a more concentrated appraisal of individual businesses and projects leading to successful outcomes. Conservation and Preservation may be a big funding project at the outset given the very nature of the Border country.

We are not going to build overnight a new local economy (industrial or rural) - nor do I think we should, with all the inherent dangers of creating larger urban areas in the country. Tourism will be and will remain the lifeblood of the Borders - how much do we need? In addition as the infrastructure improves - whether it be rail or road-the area will attract a bigger commuter population with all the well debated issues around where they spend their incomes.

The very creation of a SBNP will in a sense provide a further branding to the Borders, even if this simply confirms the historical, cultural and geographical significance of the area - if you like it will create the overall umbrella needed to harness and further develop all the existing and start up businesses within it. Thats a relatively low cost start point.

James Oliver - 28 November 2017

Creating more National Parks in Scotland reduces the amount of land available for wind farms. Unlikely that the Scottish Government will allow that to happen. Borders, I would keep a low profile if I were you. Making a fuss will only attract the wind power carpetbaggers to your area.

Alec Young - 18 November 2017

Why is the forgotten area of Berwickshire not being included in any discussion. I am 77 years old, and I have often said that the East corner where we are is invisible. We have plenty of history - The Covenanters, a period that is sung about in folk music because it was so important an event in the history of Scotland, a turning point even. This is only one of the significant events in our lower Eastern Borders. We have beautiful countryside, to compete with any part of our Scotland. Large Historic Houses etc. I could go on, but I will prepare a more inclusive argument, for our area in time.

Ramsay Brack - 18 November 2017

Brilliant idea for Scottish Borders, a forgotten part of Scotland. Our area has literally hundreds of historical places, places of beauty and things to do.
A National Park would invigorate our area and bring it to the notice of the greater UK public. It is a place travellers "pass through" on their way to "Scotland" ie Edinburgh and the North.
Get them to STOP and see the delights and taste the produce.

May Kinghorn - 10 October 2017

The boundary should be revised to take in the Ettrick and Yarrow valleys and upper Tweeddale. A finger corridor should remain outside the park including Galashiels, Selkirk and Hawick to allow industrial development.

David Steel - 26 September 2017

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