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Mick on a Mercury mission

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By Fiona Reid
Mick on a Mercury mission

ISSUES connected to the neglect of the former Moffat Mercury Inn have been flagged up by a concerned resident.

Mick Barker is on a mission to get action at the derelict hotel, located near the town’s entrance.

He has raised the matter with the community council and has now also written to the chief executive of Dumfries and Galloway Council along with the Annandale North councillors.

Mr Barker said: “This is not the first mail I have sent to the council in recent weeks over the matter of the Mercury Hotel, but as a resident of the county I am less than content with the council’s executive management response to the ongoing situation.

“I suspect there are four main issues to address with regard to the Mercury, and its my intent to do what I can to shed a light on them. This is not going to be done overnight.”

He wants answers on the building owners’ asset management strategy and associated issues and implications, as well as the strategic direction and targets that the elected representatives have set for the council executive and management over time, in relation to such buildings, and their degree of satisfaction with the current situation in Moffat.

Mr Barker has also raised the council’s “lack of effectiveness or enthusiasm” to address issues around the general subject of dereliction and he wants to know more about the management of the health and safety risks at the Mercury site, adding: “There’s fire risks, such as arson, (the Mercury is adjacent to thousands of gallons of fuel), structural collapse and in this case the possible release of asbestos, and the general consequences of dilapidation, e.g. infestation by rats, with the risk of the spread of Lymes disease etc.

“This is an issue on which the whole of Moffat is both united and disappointed.”

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