Future of Jacob’s Well up for debate

Jacob's Well wood at Coldstream
Jacob's Well wood at Coldstream

Woodland Trust no longer wants to have responsibility for the Jacob’s Well woodland area beside Coldstream Bridge and is looking to either lease it or sell it.

The two acre piece of land that slopes down to the River Tweed at the border crossing at Coldstream Bridge was gifted to the trust by Lennel Estates in 1995, and in recent months there have been discussions between Woodland Trust and Coldstream Community Trust about its future.

Trees were planted to help stabilise the slope of the site, assist wildlife and keep weeds down, but they have received little attention and are in need of thinning as they impede driver sightlines at the bridge. The site consists of three paths, two sets of wooden steps, a stone perimeter wall on the side of the A698, three sign posts (one immediately below), a wooden seat and a small wooden bridge across the Jacob’s Well.

Coldstream Community Trust decided that it does not want to own or lease the site but would consider a partnership agreement with the Woodland Trust if there is sufficient local support for this idea.

A spokesperson for Coldstream Community Trust said: “The status quo was not viewed by either party as a viable option and the community trust does not want to buy the site. We have been offered a 99 year lease at £1 per annum and a £5,000 start-up budget but it would need to carry all the site risk.

“This offer was refused by the community trust because of the risk; the community trust not having the capacity to absorb this risk.

“We are seeking local support for a partnership agreement between Woodland Trust (site owner and regulator) and Coldstream Community Trust (site manager, under WT regulation).”