CONTENTIOUS plans for a £200,000 skatepark in central Jedburgh have been given the green light.

Scottish Borders Council’s planning committee unanimously agreed on Monday to give full consent for the creation of the facility on land known locally as The Dip – a greenfield site between the A68 and the Jed Water.

The proposal – from the Jed Sakeboard Group – had elicited 12 individual letters of objection along with 84 pro forma expressions of dissent. These objectors, around half of whom live in the town, claimed the project would devalue the amenity of a popular and well-used area, generate noise nuisance for neighbouring residents and have an adverse impact on views of historic Jedburgh Abbey.

There were also 96 letters and 100 pro formas supporting the application, with 85% of these coming from Jedburgh residents. They stressed that there were no existing facilities in the town for skateboarders and BMX riders and that the site represented a safer environment for them. The supporters claimed the skatepark would attract visitors and increase footfall in Jedburgh, promote the health and wellbeing of young people and combat crime and antisocial behaviour.

The application was also supported by Jedburgh Community Council and SBC planning officer Deborah Chalmers.

She said: “The skatepark can be satisfactorily accommodated within the site. It is not considered the proposal will result in any adverse significant impact on noise, flood risk, listed buildings, archaeology, the conservation area, trees or the Jed Water.”