A HOUSING development opposed by supporters of a local school and community centre has been rejected by councillors.

Beck Developments wanted to build 36 new homes on land just north of The Meadows, in Colne.

But a number of residents living on The Meadows also spoke out against the plans in front of Colne area committee on Thursday night.

Among the concerns expressed were the drainage and flooding problems already experienced on The Meadows and down to the North Valley Community Centre.

Jim Smart, from the community centre, said: “We have two culverts at the side of the community centre.

“In the summer you can hear the water running into the culvert, and it is overflowing at the back of the centre.”

A spokesman for Sacred Heart RC Primary School, speaking of behalf of headteacher John Robertshaw, said: “This is a small school with a rural ethos.

"The development of the field at the back of the school will result in the school changing from a rural location to an urban or suburban school.”

Coun Joe Cooney, a ward councillor and council leader, said: “Coun David Clegg and I have held two meetings with residents.

“This is one of the few applications I have been involved in where nearly all residents have taken an interest, attended meetings and spoken with one voice.

“As councillors we have to listen when there is that much concern over it.”

As part of the development a 1.5metre ‘service strip’, which residents on The Meadows had believed belonged to their properties and has been looked after and landscaped, would be turned into a footpath.

Coun Cooney said: “It is just wrong to come back 15 to 18 years later and say we want that 1.5metre strip back.”

Andrew Walker, speaking on behalf of the developers, said: “This scheme will improve the drainage problems that currently exist on The Meadows.”

Councillors voted to reject the scheme against advice from planning officers, and Pendle Council’s development control committee will now make a final decision on the plans later this month.