Gala bus station to be demolished

The old bus station in Galashiels is due to be knocked down. Picture: Stuart Cobley
The old bus station in Galashiels is due to be knocked down. Picture: Stuart Cobley

The former bus station in Galashiels, is to be demolished to make way for extra town centre car parking with the work due to be completed by the end of June.

The news comes five years after Scottish Borders Council first served a compulsory purchase order (CPO) on the building’s owners First Group.

The acquisition was completed in 2013, but the redundant Stirling Street facility has remained standing, despite the opening last August of the £5.2m transport interchange at which First is the only commercial operator.

The continued presence of the eyesore building eight months after the opening of the Borders Railway – also served by the interchange – has been the source of much local disquiet.

But a council spokesperson confirmed this week: “The former bus station building in Galashiels will be demolished following the final removal of public utility services.

“The area will then be returned to short-stay car parking, predominantly for town centre use, and landscaping.

“It is hoped the works will be completed before the end of June this year.”

Galashiels Bus Station opened in 1965 - the same year as the new Scottish College of Textiles and the slaughterhouse at Langlee.

Operations manager Lee Young, of Owners Forst who used to operate out of the bus station, said at the time of the closure in 2013: “Over the years hundreds of thousands of customers have used the bus station and I’m sure many have fond memories.

“It’s provided First Borders with a good home.”