A BORDERS scaffolding company can look forward to a flood-free future after a bid for a new office block was given the green light.

John Laidlaw & Son has been based on the Bankend Industrial Estate at Edinburgh Road in Jedburgh for the last 20 years.

But the company’s current office building is situated at a separate site away from its yard, close to the River Jed.

In January 2017 a large flood caused damage to the existing office and similar floods also resulted in less serious damage in 2017 and 2019.

As a result of the flood threat the company has been unable to insure the building and its contents against flood damage and need to move location to higher ground to safeguard the business and the employment of its staff.

The company was granted earlier planning permission for a permanent office complex.

However, because of demand within the construction industry post-Covid the manpower is not currently available to build it.

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As a stop-gap the company submitted another planning application to Scottish Borders Council to erect a temporary cabin within the yard to act as an office for approximately the next two years.

A report submitted with a planning application says: “With the ever-threat of flooding the applicant wishes to erect this cabin whilst the construction works are waiting to start up and until the completion of the new office block as per the approved application.

“With the ever-changing climate and these 1 in 100 year events happening more frequently the applicant wishes to move operations to one site on higher ground.

“The proposed office block will be built on a steel frame approximately one metre off the existing ground level at its highest part so that any concerns regarding flooding have been removed.

“Once work on the permanent building have been completed then the cabin will be dismantled and removed from the site.”

Now SBC  planning officer Euan Calvert has formally approved the application, saying in his report: “The prefabricated box design of the cabins is not a particularly attractive feature however it will emulate the present appearance of the site which is occupied by shipping containers and cabins of similar designs.

“For this reason, the temporary or industrial vernacular can be accepted in this circumstance.”