THEY say everybody needs good neighbours - and they don’t come any better than in the community of Gateside, which has just scooped the enviable title of the UK’s Friendliest Street.
Now villagers are preparing for the party of their lives after winning £5000 to spend celebrating their victory in the competition, organised by Tesco Magazine.
The only Scots neighbourhood in a shortlist of six, Gateside - which has a population of around 200 - received 32 per cent of the votes and its residents were praised for their ‘outstanding acts of kindness and community spirit.’
The news was greeted with joy by resident Hannah Phillips (35), who nominated Gateside for the title.
She said: “We’re surprised but absolutely ecstatic to have won.
“Despite being a small community, everyone’s got really behind the competition.
“We haven’t decided what sort of celebration we’ll have yet, but it will probably be along the same lines as the Jubilee lunch we held.”
Hannah, who’s a member of the local community association as well as chair of the PTA, nominated the village because she says that everyone shares their skills, which range from maths tutoring to bike repairs.
They get together for community gardening projects and one resident even provides a free taxi service for people going to hospital appointments, while another cuts people’s lawns.
“Between us we know someone who can fix it, lend it or get it!” Hannah said.
“Gateside is not a nosy community, but it is very neighbourly and there is a fantastic atmosphere.
“We are also adept fund-raisers, whether it is céilidhs or coffee mornings.
“We raise money not only to look after our village hall, but also to look after our villagers.
“For such a small village, we have a lot going on.”
Amongst those to offer congratulations was Councillor Andy Heer, who commented: “It’s entirely deserved.
“The community spirit in Gateside is second to none and sets an example to us all.
“From their excellent primary school, their village hall and the local shop, the spirit of friendliness and good neighbourliness prevails everywhere.”
He added: “Congratulations to Hannah Phillips who entered Gateside into the competition and to all the other villagers who make Gateside such a good place to live.”