John Lamont: Small businesses crucial for Borders

John Lamont
John Lamont

I was delighted to welcome the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne MP, to the Borders this month.

The Chancellor met with business leaders to listen to their plans for the future and to hear what further help the UK Government could provide.

At the meeting was Perryman’s Buses, who have recently taken over five new routes in the Borders, including linking Edinburgh with Duns and Berwick.

Like myself, the Chancellor fully understands that small businesses are the life blood of our economy, providing much needed jobs and growth, particularly in a rural setting such as the Borders. That is why I welcome the UK Government’s business and jobs tax cuts and why I think it is so important to offer support to hard working businesses.

The visit of the Chancellor was a timely reminder of why most businesses believe we are better off as part of the United Kingdom. Business leaders realise the UK provides financial security and stability to businesses and jobs. And Borderers know that it makes no sense to put up barriers and borders with the rest of the UK, particularly when we export twice as much to England as we do to any other part of the world.

It is an exciting time of the year in the Borders, with the common riding and festivals already in full swing. These events are a key part of what makes our region so unique, and I believe it is very important to continue a tradition that in some cases is hundreds of years old.

It was a pleasure to be able to attend many of the local events. They have so far been blessed with good weather!

They will be attended by thousands of local residents, and in doing so will bring together communities. I know that each of the principals that have been selected to represent their towns and villages will be immensely proud and I wish them the best of luck in their roles.

I am also very much looking forward to the Borders Union Show which I know attracts farmers and visitors from all over Scotland. If you have missed some of the great festivals and shows which the Borders has to offer, I hope you get the chance to visit the Kelso and Duns shows in the next few weeks.

I am currently holding my summer surgery tour, which because of the forthcoming referendum is slightly shorter than last year. However, there are still plenty of chances to catch me.

For the exact dates, timings and venues you can visit my website or look out for details in the local press. Alternatively, please call my constituency office on 01450 375 948 and I will do my best to assist.