Kelso hotel hoping to expand appeal as wedding venue

How a new canopy planned at Ednam House Hotel in Kelso would look.
How a new canopy planned at Ednam House Hotel in Kelso would look.

Bosses at a Kelso hotel have applied to Scottish Borders Council planners for consent for proposals to boost its appeal as a wedding venue.

Ednam House Hotel, a grade-A listed building run as a hotel for almost a century, has had plans drawn up to reinstate a roof terrace and extend its bar and kitchen.

The Robert Parker Collection group, its owner since 2014, wants to continue to invest in it to boost its appeal, particularly for weddings.

Galashiels-based architect Aitken Turnbull explored various options for re-instatement of the first-floor terrace in order to increase the capacity of the Bridge Street hotel, and its initial plans included a modern glass enclosure of the terrace.

However, after meetings with council planners, heritage officers and Historic Environment Scotland, it was decided that was not appropriate.

A design and access statement says: “It was, however, accepted that the hotel needed to invest and develop and that a scaled-back, more temporary solution might be more sympathetic to the original building.

“A new stretch canopy is proposed to cover the terrace. This would be formed in an elastic fabric and supported on posts and held on anchor points that would be attached to the extension.

“It is anticipated the structure would be in place during April to October and would be removed during the winter months.

“The dramatic outlook over the Tweed from this new facility will attract more business for the hotel. “

“It will contribute to securing its future as a high-quality luxury hotel destination and venue and enhance the economic vibrancy of Kelso.”

Ednam House, designed by James Nisbet, was originally built as a private mansion, called Havana House, in 1761.

Extensions to form a hotel were added in 1932 in the shape of a south wing, with a north wing following in 1937 and a single-storey dining room to the west in 1955.