EXACTLY a year ago today (Friday) the Eddleston Water burst its banks during Beltane Friday ruining many people's festivities.

The floods caused problems to many properties along the watercourse, it was the first of six occasions throughout the year when the waters overflowed.

Motorists, householders and businesses were repeatedly caught unawares with vehicles and properties water damaged.

Residents were also forced to wade through flood waters or use a ladder to second floor windows to enter and leave their properties.

As a result Peebles Community Council, with the assistance of the Scottish Borders Council Emergency Planning staff have began to develop a Community Resilience Plan which has already been adopted in several other areas of the Scottish Borders.

Whilst the plan will not stop natural weather phenomena such as floods, heavy snow or wind damage, it will make the community better prepared to help alleviate the stress.

In the coming months, Peebles Community Council plan to hold a series of meetings with local clubs and voluntary organisations, local volunteers are seen as essential to the success of a resilience plan.

Peebles Community Council Chairman Alasdair Stewart said: "The Community Council over recent months has been in discussion with Jim Fraser (SBC Emergency Planning Officer) about creating a Resilience Plan for Peebles. Such a plan would increase the ability of the community to self-help and assist less able members of the community in times of an emergency, such as snow clearing, assisting in evacuation of flooded premises, etc. and to provide additional help to the council's emergency plan in times of serious incidents.

"It is important to recognise that as resources are now available we would be able to produce and implement an appropriate plan for Peebles; and thus provide the opportunity, incentive, and ability for more members of the community to be able to effectively respond to local emergencies." It is understood that a public meeting is planned in the autumn followed by leaflet and questionnaire drops. Peebles High School is also to be brought on board.

Alasdair added: "Whilst the Council's Emergency Response Team will assist with resources to prepare the plan as well as further resources to implement it when an incident occurs, the most effective response will involve a community effort and we do need local volunteers who are willing to assist in the preparation of the plan and when completed to run the plan.

"Training will be made available when appropriate. Volunteer now to be part of the preparation of the plan." For more information log on to www.scotborders.gov.uk/resilientcommunities.