AN investigation into a new snooker club in Oswaldtwistle was launched after it opened for business while its windows were still boarded up.

Concerns were raised about the condition of the former Golden Cross Inn, in Union Road, which was given the go-ahead to open as a ‘pay-as-you-use’ snooker club – Ossy Snooker and Pool – in December.

The building’s landlord has pledged to improve its appearance, and blamed bad weather for the delay in repair work.

Oswaldtwistle councillor Peter Britcliffe called on the council to ‘urgently investigate’ the club which, a spokesman yesterday confirmed, it was doing, and said he would meet police to discuss the matter later today.

He said: “This is creating a derelict appearance in an important part of our main commercial area of Union Road.

“I also have concerns about young people using a boarded-up building as I feel they are safer in an open environment.”

Immanuel councillor Judith Addison also said she had contacted the council.

She said: “As ward councillor, I’m concerned about the condition of this building, and I have written to the planning department.

“These concerns were about the external condit-ion of the building, particularly the boarded-up windows, which could also raise the issue of safety. If there was a fire, and people can’t see in or out, it could be a safety issue.”

The building’s landlord, Arfal Ali, said work would be carried out on the building in the near future.

He said: “I’m concerned with the front of the building, but the weather has been bad.

“From the outside, it does not look open, but the signs have been ordered and should be here next week.

“The windows will be replaced, and banners will be put up.”

Mr Ali said the club has already proved to be popular with young people since it opened a week-and-a-half ago.

He said: “The parents are happy because kids have stopped hanging about and they are mostly inside, so it’s going well.

“I rang the Police Community Support Officers and said they should come and talk to people.”