SIGHTSEEING bus tours of the Borders have been scrapped due to mounting roadworks around Galashiels.

Borders Buses introduced the open-top service last year.

And the hop-on hop-off service, which takes in Abbotsford House, both Melrose and Dryburgh abbeys, the Trimontium Museum, the William Wallace Statue and Scott's View, returned in May for another summer season.

This year's daily pick ups and drop offs were due to continue through until Sunday, September 23.

But it was announced on Friday that due to difficulties with the route in and out of Galashiels, as well as issues with the vehicle, it was decided to end the tours on Sunday, August 12.

Sharon Morrison, commercial manager at Borders Buses, told us: "Operational issues such as on-going roadworks in the area, mainly in Galashiels, coupled with a lack of vehicle flexibility has impacted on the tour and its reliability.

"Rather than compromising the service we have taken the difficult decision to curtail our City Sightseeing Scottish Borders tour a few weeks earlier."

As well as the roadworks around Galafoot Bridge and Abbotsford House, as well as streets within Galashiels, the firm has also been hampered by overhanging trees on the roads leading to Scott's View, which prevents them using a replacement open-top double-decker.

And when mechanical problems with the single-decker open-top bus occurred last month, a normal coach had to be used leading to complaints from passengers.

Talks are already taking place with the local authority about the Scott's View trees being cut back ahead of next year's tours which will commence in May.

Despite this summer's set-backs, the operators have still recorded a year-on-year increase in passengers.

Ms Morrison added: “We are delighted the number of customers travelling on the tour has increased from last summer and we expect next year to be even better.”