NEW plans for a Rhu castle at the centre of a row over alleged anti-social behaviour by guests have been lodged with council bosses.

Invergare, on Glenarn Road, was described as an "Airbnb party pad" after angry neighbours claimed disruptive guests at the property were making their lives a misery.

The new application seeks retrospective permission for a "change of use" for the property from residential use to "exclusive use visitor accommodation".

It's the latest attempt by Invergare's owners to secure permission for a change of the use of the property from a residential home to a commercial business.

A previous application was lodged earlier in 2021 but was withdrawn after an Argyll and Bute Council official recommended refusal – prompting the house's owner, Graham Gardner, to hit out at a "NIMBY [Not In My Back Yard] mentality" in the village.

READ MORE: Invergare Castle's owner hits out at 'NIMBY mentality' in Rhu as plans for property are withdrawn

A planning statement submitted by agents Savills with the new application states: “This application seeks to clarify and address any material matters that were raised in response to that (previous) application, to help inform and reassure officers and the public what the ongoing use of the property is proposed to be.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the change of use proposed under this application will result in no physical changes to the interior or exterior of this building necessitating planning permission or listed building consent in their own right.

“It is our contention that the proposed change of use for this B listed building in the conservation area will provide it with a sustainable function going forward that is appropriate today both to the character of the building and the character of the neighbouring area.”

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It continues: “The owners wish to promote Invergare Castle for exclusive use, self-catering accommodation. The 12 bedrooms in the Castle mean that the property can easily accommodate 24 guests.

“The brand has been developed to appeal to families and friends, providing a luxurious base for guests to explore the local area, play golf, explore Loch Lomond or make a day trip further afield.

“Guests staying at Invergare will benefit the local community and economy, through direct employment opportunities and secondary spend in local cafes, restaurants, shops and activities.

"The owners intend to pro-actively engage with local suppliers and promote them to guests at Invergare.

READ MORE: Neighbours of luxury Rhu mansion hit out at 'Airbnb party pad' over guests' behaviour

“The focus of the property on luxurious visitor accommodation for families and groups of friends is reflected in its management arrangements.

“The property will not accept stag or hen parties, and intends to adopt the following management procedures in order to prevent any adverse impact to neighbouring properties: no loud music, no fireworks, minimum stay of two nights to prevent party bookings.

“The property [will be] only available as exclusive use to one booking at a time; multiple, individual bookings [will not] be allowed.”

Savills' statement also says the applicant would be "happy to explore entering into a good neighbour agreement with the council" – under which potential guests would be screened using an online review system before bookings are accepted, and which could also see the owners post reviews of the guests on completion of the visit.

READ MORE: Airbnb castle in Rhu 'still on our radar', say Helensburgh police

The statement says: "Such a control could be made explicit on the booking pages of the property, dissuading potential guests from any behaviour that would have an adverse impact on the amenity of the surrounding area."

The statement also expresses the view that there is a strong market demand for additional visitor accommodation in and around Rhu, with a travel operator reporting strong annual occupancy levels for its four properties in the area.

The plans for Invergare can be viewed in the council’s planning portal at by searching using the reference number 21/01404/PP.

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