An outbuilding on the site of the former Wamphray Primary School in Moffat is to be converted into a residential annexe.
However, Dumfries and Galloway Council’s planning bosses have reassured neighbours that the building cannot be used as an AirBnB property or rented out commercially.
The Category B listed former primary school has a directly adjacent schoolhouse, which is owned by the Glanton family.
Meanwhile, directly next to their house is a bare outbuilding which is the centre of a planning application by Stratstone Investments Ltd.
Stratstone Investments submitted plans to create a bedroom, living room, en-suite and store cupboard, while also blocking three window openings.
Six objections were lodged with Dumfries and Galloway Council from people living nearby who had concerns about road safety, noise, loss of privacy, and the design of the building conversion.
Peter Glanton and wife Denise own the adjacent School House building, and live there along with daughter Rachel and their granddaughter.
Peter submitted a written objection, stating: “The south facing wall of the outbuilding is only four feet from the rear wall of the main living quarters of our listed building.
“We would ask that if this development is approved the south facing wall should be sound insulated.
“We would like to be assured that if the development is approved the residential annexe will never be used for commercial purposes, such as renting or AirBnB.
“We consider the proposed French doors to be out of character with the adjacent and neighbouring buildings, and would ask that they be replaced with a door more in keeping with those buildings.
“The proposed French doors are, in our opinion, contrary to the spirit of Moffat Conservation Area Character Appraisal and Management Plan.”
Daughter Rachel also submitted a written objection, which read: “The annexe is incredibly close to our main living quarter areas, the sitting room and the study – the window of which looks directly out at the outhouse.
“As such, I ask for consideration of soundproofing measures to protect our peace, quiet and privacy.
“I don’t believe the French doors at fitting with the character, age or appearance of the listed school building.”
Annandale North Councillor Stephen Thompson said: “I think the conditions in the report satisfy some of the concerns that are being raised. The only question I would really have is around this idea of the soundproofing.
“I’m not sure what scope we have to take action on that.”
A council planning officer responded: “If there was unexpected noise, nuisance, or conflict between the properties on that basis, then environmental health officers could take action under their own legislation.
“But it’s not something we anticipate when you look at houses in very close proximity, or terraced, we’re not expecting any land use conflict there.”
The council officer also confirmed that, as this is a residential annexe, the building could not be used rented out as a holiday home or used as an AirBnB property.
This was included in the planning consent conditions as councillors unanimously agreed to approve the outbuilding conversion.