A KEY route through rural Peeblesshire is set to close for two weeks to allow for bridge repairs.

To conclude a five-months refurbishment programme at Merlindale Bridge, engineers will need full closure of the structure to allow for waterproofing work.

From Tuesday, September 3 the B712 will be closed at the bridge for around a fortnight.

Traffic, including the 91 bus service between Peebles and Biggar, will be diverted via the A72 and A701.

Scottish Borders Council’s Executive member for roads, Gordon Edgar said: “We fully understand the importance of Merlindale Bridge to local communities and businesses along the B712 road, which is why we have tried to avoid closing the crossing during the five months of work.

“However, the works now required mean a closure is unavoidable.

"We have kept the closure to two weeks, and have put in place contingency measures to try to keep disruption to a minimum.

“We thank the local communities and businesses for their understanding and cooperation during the refurbishment of Merlindale Bridge.

“We are committed to our roads network, and as part of our budget in February we invested an extra £2.3million into roads.”

The £335,000 restoration of the historic bridge is due to be completed at the end of next month.

During the closure Scottish Borders Council will operate a 'demand responsive' taxi service for residents living along the B712 at Drumzelier, Stobo and Broughton.

To book the service contact 01721 721212.