New homes at old Kelso High School could help free up larger homes in town

The old Kelso High School in Bowmont Street.
The old Kelso High School in Bowmont Street.

New homes within the former Kelso High School could help free up larger houses in the town and will be allocated on a needs basis, the landlord behind the proposed development has confirmed.

If approved it’s hoped the 34 new extra care homes at the Bowmont Street site will help elderly people vacate three or four bed houses in the town for use by families.

The proposed one bed homes, set aside for over 60s will be built and run by Borders social landlord Eildon Housing.

“This is a really exciting project for Kelso,” councillor Tommy Weatherston said. “I would like to see Eildon sit down with Scottish Borders Housing Association and Waverley Housing and see if they can free up three and four bed homes in the town. Some elderly people are staying in homes that are too big and they could be moved to more suitable homes which until now haven’t existed.”

Community council chairman Dean Weatherston added: “I would support that idea. We have elderly residents sitting in homes that aren’t suitable for their needs.”

A Eildon Housing representative told the meeting the units, catering for a cross section of care needs, would be allocated on a needs basis and that detailed discussions on how the allocations would work would take place.

Meanwhile Harry Tomczyk warned: “There has been controversy in the past that people have not been accepted for these types of homes but someone from outside the Borders has got one. We wouldn’t want to have a similar controversy with this project.”

Fellow councillor Colin McGrath, a long-time advocate for creating homes for the elderly in the town, added: “There’s going to a be a huge need for these extra care homes.”