Rejection of Hawick farm’s glamping site bid going to appeal

A farming family hoping to have three glamping pods built to help safeguard the long-term future of their business are appealing against planning consent for them being refused.

Wednesday, 16th September 2020, 12:12 pm
Updated Monday, 21st September 2020, 4:05 pm
What glamping pods proposed at Stouslie Farm, north-west of Hawick, would look like.

That appeal will go before a meeting of Scottish Borders Council’s local review body to be held via video-link on Monday, September 21.

Councillors will review the rejection in July by officers of a bid submitted in March to site timber cabins with accompanying hot tubs on land to the south-west of Stouslie Farmhouse, near Hawick.

A statement prepared by Galashiels-based Ferguson Planning on behalf of applicant Carly Anderson says the proposed tourism development would enable Stouslie Farm to diversify and generate extra income.

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It adds: “The appellant and her family are committed to the future of the farm and are attempting to secure modest diversification which makes efficient use of as little land as possible to secure the greatest returns.”

The original application was refused over the visual impact the development would have, with planning officer Scott Shearer saying in his report: “The site occupies an isolated and exposed location and would fail to sympathetically integrate with the character, appearance and sense of place of the surrounding rural area, and the proposed landscaping does not provide sufficient mitigation of the resulting landscape and visual impacts.”

That’s a view the family disagree with, and Ferguson Planning’s appeal statement explains: “The appellant does not accept that conflict exists between the design of the proposed development and the rural character of the surrounding area.

“It is important to note that the proposed glamping pods comprise timber construction and would be mostly screened by proposed hedge planting.

“It is also material to note that the highway access, and the small car park which fronts on to it, would be fully bounded by new hedging and would not be visible from the surrounding countryside.

“The appellant and her family are seeking to diversify Stouslie Farm in order to secure a sustainable footing for the agricultural enterprise and provide continuity for future generations of the family.

“She wants to safeguard continued agricultural production and uphold existing environmental and ecological good practice within the holding while sharing the unique qualities of the site and character of the surrounding area with visitors.”

The appeal report adds: “The proposed pods are to be sourced prefabricated from an established supplier before being transported to the site and lifted into place.

“Construction will involve very little on-site assembly and little work altogether for a new tourist accommodation development.”