£46m new Peebles High School set for green light after sports concerns addressed

A new £46m Peebles High School is poised to get a formal green light next week after concerns over ‘inadequate’ athletics provision were addressed.

It's hoped the new school will be open by December 2025.
It's hoped the new school will be open by December 2025.

When members of Scottish Borders Council’s planning and building standards committee meet on Monday, July 4, they will be recommended to approve the state-of-the-art building.

The work would involve the demolition of the existing high school and the building of a new community campus on land currently used as school playing fields.

It is to incorporate an extension to the existing sports pavilion, partial demolition of existing school buildings, 3G sports pitches, CCTV cameras, playgrounds and a reconfiguration of the car park at the school in Springwood Road.

Should plans be approved, construction is expected to commence towards the end of this year, with hopes that the school will be ready to open its doors by December 2025.

The high school was the site of a fire that did major damage to the building in November 2019.

Earlier this year, concerns were raised that the proposed sports provision at the school failed to give athletes of the future a sporting chance of success.

Peebles Community Council and Sport Scotland were among those that raised concerns regarding the need for a longer training track and inadequate provision for the size of the school.

In a report to the committee, Craig Miller, principal planning officer, says: “The issue of comparable replacement greenspace and sports provision has, more than any other issue, resulted in the largest number of objections to the proposals.

“These have been received from both local residents but also athletes groups, community representatives and, initially, Sport Scotland.

“Issues raised have been considered further by the agent and discussed with Peebles High School and user groups and amendments made to proposals to incorporate an additional lane on the sprint track, realignment of the long jump with additional sandpit, a shot putt area and a lined 400m grass running track south of Craigerne Lane.

“These amendments are in addition to the initially proposed sports enhancements which include a new 3G pitch, additional changing rooms, dance studio and indoor storage.

“Sport Scotland have clearly stated that the proposals now meet the national requirement to be comparable and like-for-like with the facilities that currently exist.”