BUILDING a ‘teen shelter’ in Victoria Park is seen as a “worthy trial” in a bid to combat anti-social issues in Peebles, according to a report.

The project, put forward by Peebles Youth Group, would give young people a place to hang out outside.

The idea of a shelter in Victoria Park was raised repeatedly during a consultation exercise with teenagers held earlier this year.

Now proposals are set to be discussed at a meeting of Peebles Common Good Fund’s sub committee on Wednesday (November 22).

A report outlining the plan states: “The shelter will be owned by and be the responsibility of Scottish Borders Council, in the same way as the Victoria Park children’s play park and skatepark are.

“Peebles Youth Voice will ask its participating organisations to communicate with their young people the importance that they respect the shelter and the ground surrounding it.”

It adds: “The young people will be able to personalise the shelter, which it is hoped will increase their level of responsibility and ownership.”

Peebles Youth Group was set up for those interested in the welfare of youngsters in the area and members have been meeting since 2022.

Concerns over anti-social behaviour have been raised in recent years.

The group was behind the idea to bring ‘teen evenings’ to the Eastgate Theatre, giving youngsters a dry place to meet to listen to music or watch films, in a bid to combat the problems.

And members hope building the shelter will help to improve the bond between different generations in the town.

The report adds: “On its own, simply erecting a teen shelter is not going to solve anti-social behaviour issues in Peebles or see better relations established across the community; quite a few other initiatives – which will be worked on – are necessary.

“And there remains a risk that the shelter will not be respected by an element of the young people.

“However, this is a first step and, as acknowledged by the police, is a worthy trial; it is a demonstration that the community wants to listen to our young people and seek to meet reasonable requests.”

Tweeddale East councillor Julie Pirone has undertaken two consultations held in the park on separate Saturdays to gauge public opinion on the proposed shelter.

Fifty-six per cent of respondents were in favour, with 30 per cent opposed to the plans.

The report states: “The police have given their support and believe it to be a worthy trial.

“While the overall outcome of the consultation – 56 per cent in favour – is supportive, it has to be noted that 30 per cent were not in favour and 14 per cent were unsure, alongside which concerns were expressed by members of the public during consultation.

“These largely focused upon the risks that the shelter would be vandalised and could lead to an increase in anti-social behaviour in the park and surrounding area.

“It is acknowledged that these risks exist and cannot be wholly mitigated.”