AN ARTISAN baker who raised concerns about fighting and drinking outside his Haddington home is standing for election after exhausting his options as a “member of the public".

Falko Burkert is one of a number of new faces who have sparked a community council election in the town after putting themselves forward for a position.

And he says that frustration at a lack of action and a lack of police in the town centre he has made home has spurred him to step up to the plate.

Originally from Germany, Falko has lived in Scotland for 24 years and spent the last four in Haddington, where he opened his self-titled restaurant and bakery.

Formerly based in Edinburgh, the konditormeister says he moved to East Lothian to escape city life.

However, issues with anti-social behaviour in the town centre and a lack of tourists have left him frustrated.

In March 2019, he told a meeting of Haddington’s Community and Police Partnership (CAPP) how “blood, urine, excrement and vomit” had been left outside his front door.

And he said that some of his neighbours who had also moved to Haddington for a quieter life were now regretting the decision, with one even thinking about selling up.

The town centre previously had a Problem Solving Partnership (PSP) in place after concerns about anti-social behaviour were raised.

The joint police, council and community initiative is introduced in trouble hotspots and sees an increase in police patrols and activity.

Now, Falko says he wants to be elected onto the community council to give a stronger voice to local residents affected by the issue, adding that it was time for people to “roll up their sleeves”.

He said: “I have seen the issues and tried all the channels available to me as a member of the public but we still have the problems.

"Moving one step further up might give me a better chance of tackling some of the problems we are seeing.

“When you try to call the police, they are not here anymore.

"There are no uniformed officers on the street and it takes up to 40 minutes to answer the phone at the call centre if it is not an emergency.

“We have youngsters illegally drinking in our town centre.

"We need to roll our sleeves up and take it in hand.”

Community council elections are only triggered when more people apply to join than there are positions available.

East Lothian will see three communities go to the polls on October 7, with Haddington, Pencaitland, and Garvald and Morham community councils all requiring a public vote.

Falko said he wanted to step up not just to tackle anti-social behaviour but also a lack of tourism in the historic town centre.

He said:  “Haddington is a rough diamond that needs to be polished, it is authentic and real but it is hidden from tourism. We need to make it known.

“If you tell people this is where you live, often they do not even know where it is.

"We have to do more to bring tourists into our town centre if we are going to survive in the future.”

Polling will take place by postal ballot, with papers due to be issued to the electorate in the contested areas in a matter of days.

To view the full list of candidates go to