More improvements lined up at Haining in Selkirk
Efforts to return an 18th century stately home in the Borders to its former glory are continuing.
Haining House in Selkirk, set in 61 acres of loch-side woodland and parkland, was bequeathed to townsfolk and the wider public by late lawyer Andrew Nimmo-Smith in 2009.
Selkirk’s Haining Charitable Trust has worked on the restoration of the Castle Street building in stages over the last 11 years in a bid to make it more of an asset to its community.
Though closed at the moment due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, the £1.5m hall is used to host events such as wedding fairs, art exhibitions, community gatherings and musical concerts.
The trust has now submitted an application to planners at Scottish Borders Council for the latest stage in its restoration.
Works being lined up include the creation of a new accessible side entrance with landscaped ramps, alterations to the external threshold, improvements to first-floor toilet facilities and insertion of glass balustrading to low-level first-floor windows.
In a statement to planners written by Edinburgh-based architect Lee Boyd on behalf of the trust, he says: “The Haining is an A-listed country house and estate.
“The late owner, Andrew Nimmo-Smith, who died in 2009, left the house, policies and grounds in trust with the intention that they were put into public use for the benefit of the community of Selkirkshire and the wider public.
“The current house was built in 1792 by Mark Pringle as a modest Palladian country house with the probable intention to eventually demolish the existing 17th century house built by the Riddell family.
“The building is now owned by the Haining Charitable Trust, which, since successful permissions to change the use from domestic to public, runs public and community events from the house and estate and has carried out a series of upgrading and refurbishment projects over the last 10 years on the house, the stables courtyard buildings, estate cottages and the accessibility of the estate and loch.
“This planning permission is part of wider upgrading measures in the house to enable the first floor to be compliant for public use.”