Plans for new Kelso High School lodged

Kelso High School Plan
Kelso High School Plan

Plans for the new £14.8million Kelso High School have been lodged with the council.

Agents for landowners, the Duke of Roxburghe and Lord Ralph Kerr and the Fernie­hirst Trust, put in a formal “in principle” planning application for the school, 240 houses and sports facilities at Nethershot on Angraflat Road to the north-west of the town last Friday.

The lairds’ proposals are for an initial 120 houses, including 30 affordable units on 12 acres of the 45-acre site, spread over four fields between Queen’s House care home and the town’s racecourse. The school and sports fields and facilities are planned on nearly 19 acres, next to the field used by the racecourse for car parking.

A roundabout off Angraflat Road is pencilled in to serve the houses and school, and agents, Edinburgh-based Clarendon Planning & Development, say both developments could be built at the same time.

They also said if plans are given the green light, phase two – building the second lot of 120 houses – was unlikely to happen until at least 2019.

Clarendon put three options out to public consultation last October, within weeks of the council getting the go-ahead from the Scottish Government for the new secondary.

The lairds’ original plans took in the field used for racecourse parking as well as land to the north of Queen’s House and included extending the care home, but those have since been dropped. The area earmarked for the school and sports pitches has nearly doubled from the 10 acres first proposed.

Locals had first feared racecourse parking faced relocation, threatening land at the allotments, also on the north-west of the town, or the nearby golf course on Angraflat Road. But it will now remain in the same field.

Clarendon’s Antony Duthie said: “This submission is the culmination of several months of community consultation as well as liaison with Scottish Borders Council.

“Our clients consider this to be an exciting and ‘live’ proposition for the Kelso community offering a long-term plan for the sustainable growth of the town.”

And he said negotiations between the landowners and the council were “progressing positively”.