AN APPLICATION for glamping pods which split a Peeblesshire community has been approved.

As reported last week, agents Glampitect submitted a report requesting permission to build four pods on land around one kilometre north west of Innerleithen.

The application received more than 20 comments in support and in opposition to the plans.

On Monday (September 6), Scottish Borders Council's planning and building standards committee gave the application the go ahead.

Speaking after the meeting, committee chairman Simon Mountford said: “The glamping pods were approved by the planning committee after much discussion about road safety issues.

"However the committee was satisfied with the assurances in this respect provided by the roads planning officer."

The Conservative representative for Kelso added: "In approving the application, the committee felt that it was a well-designed small-scale development that would enhance the tourism offering in the area.”

According to a council report that was published ahead of this week's meeting, some of the concerns about the proposed development included the risk of anti-social behaviour, noise and light pollution, and access to the site being “inadequate”.

Meanwhile, supporting comments stated that there was a “need” for the pods, as well as that the development would provide a benefit to the area and economy.

The business is anticipated to create one full-time job, as well as one part-time role.

A Glampitect report on the plans states: “The pods will offer contemporary accommodation to visitors which is within a suitable travel distance from Edinburgh, Biggar and Hawick, thus being suitable for weekend and short breaks and further afield across the country.

“The application site is well located to allow occupiers to enjoy the surrounding tourism assets, that includes the vast network of mountain bike trails and walks in the area of the Tweed Valley.

“The concept of luxury glamping is now gaining popularity throughout the UK, with standards and guests’ expectations on the rise. It is intended by the site operator that this site will be amongst the best available in the area."

The report adds: “At the moment, there is a presence in the Innerleithen area offering this kind of luxury pod accommodation, however this site will be different as it is minimal in size and scale, offering a more tranquil experience.

“The site will also provide an outlet for local art works to be sold at the existing workshop at the parking area and a nature habitat area is proposed also for the site.”