AMBITIOUS plans to convert a Peebles farm steading into three separate homes have been submitted.

Callum and Dorothy Orr, of Nicolson Road, Loughborough, are in the process of purchasing the former agricultural buildings at Wester Happrew, just outside of Peebles, with the intention of renovating parts of the site for resale, and providing a long-term family home for themselves.

Lanarkshire-based architect Kanak Bose, who is representing the Orrs, said in a statement submitted to Scottish Borders Council: “The steading dates to 1846. It formed part of the Dystart Estate which extended to the south and west and included Easter Happrew Farm, Stobbo Estate and Stobo Castle.

“The buildings were certainly designed, and picking through the deteriorated structure, one easily finds quality features such as fine stone dressings, quality structural timberwork and not to mention the symmetrical and dominant west range of cart sheds which are a delight.

“The buildings have deteriorated over the past 15 years and this project enables a breath of new life for the buildings, and to look forward to another 75 years.

“The applicants are aware of some of the difficulties the repairs may throw at them but are welcoming the challenge.

“It is hoped that the end result will be a sympathetic re-use and renovation which also enhances the adjacent properties whilst breathing life back into the steading.”

The steading is served by a borehole, established by the previous owners, but the new properties will also make use of individual rain-water harvesting to ease the burden on the shared water source.

Renewables are a major theme of the redevelopment, with solar panels and new technology being explored.

In the design statement, Mr Bose continues: “Renewables have been considered and given the only grid service is electricity, this becomes of importance.

“There are large areas of south facing roof which will be used for wet solar or solar PV panels.

“The new lease of life brought into the buildings by conversion in compliance with the current building standards will naturally make them function as well as if they were newly built.

“It is intended to explore the use of air-source heat pumps for general space heating, whilst multi-fuel space heaters are to be fitted in the principle living spaces.”

Officers from Scottish Borders Council’s planning department will now deliberate on the plans before making a decision.