Residents from all over one of the UK’s largest constituencies have had the opportunity to meet their MP and MSP this summer.
After visiting 84 Borders towns and villages over ten days, the 2018 Summer Surgery Tour of John Lamont MP and Rachael Hamilton MSP came to an end today (Friday 3rd August).
In what is thought to be the largest of its kind in Scotland, the politicians visited communities from the large (Galashiels, pop. 14,000 to the small (Hermitage, pop c.50)
John Lamont’s constituency of Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk is the 7th largest of the 650 UK constituencies, covering nearly 4,000km2. However, by visiting more than 80 locations, no resident in the Borders has had to travel more than 9 miles to see their local MSP or MP.
During the tour, hundreds of constituents turned up to seek help with local services, let their elected representatives know what needs to be prioritised in the Borders, or simply just to meet their MP or MSP for the first time.
Common issues raised include broadband, potholes, planning issues and speeding.
The two politicians are now taking forward more than 200 cases on behalf of their constituents.
Speaking at the end of the tour, John Lamont MP said: “It is always great to speak with constituents in their local communities and I was surprised by the number of people who turned up.
“When I was elected to Westminster, I promised that I would continue to be accessible to voters,
“I think it’s really important for politicians to be accessible to voters and to find time to visit each and every community they represent, which is why it was important to me to have as many stops as possible. While I’m always contactable by email or phone, nothing beats a face-to-face chat sometimes."