EVERYONE in Peeblesshire is being encouraged to comment on plans to replace the fire-damaged high school.

On Monday (May 31) Scottish Borders Council (SBC) launched a public consultation on its preferred option for a new Peebles High School.

The new community campus would be built in the grounds of the current school as a complete rebuild.

Councillor Carol Hamilton, SBC’s executive member for children and young people, said: “The events of the Peebles High School fire have caused immeasurable disruption to the young learners and teaching staff in the area.

“The replacement campus will offer a completely new, state-of-the-art, community facility which will give our young learners access to high-quality learning and offer wide-ranging benefits to the wider public.”

Four layout proposals have been shared by the local authority, with option four being preferred.

This would see a new campus built on the grass pitch to the west of the existing school buildings.

Leading the construction of the new school will be architects Stallan Brand, who worked with SBC to build the new campuses at Langlee Primary School (Galashiels), Broomlands Primary School (Kelso) and Jedburgh Grammar Campus.

Peebles’ new site is expected to be completed by August 2024 if planning permission is approved in September following the consultation.

The council has also said there will be no further demolition of the current facilities ahead of the new project. This is to reduce any disruption to students during the building process.

The consultation papers say: “Keeping as much of the existing school operational during the new build is important.

“After the completion of the new building, all buildings will be demolished other than the Games building.

“It is not clear at this stage whether or not the existing science building will form within SBC’s overall property estate. 

“Further discussions will take place on this during the next stages.”

Peebles High School was damaged following a blaze in November 2019.

The school was divided into three areas based on the extent of the damage.

Area three, which included the art room and gymnasium, received significant smoke damage and was partially demolished for safety reasons.

The new build proposals outline a two-storey school which will feature a 3G sports pitch and spaces available for community use.

Ms Hamilton, of the Conservatives, said: “I would encourage everyone in the Peebles area to take the time to explore the dedicated consultation website and share their views with us.”

The consultation, which will run for 12 weeks, can be accessed here.