SUPPORTERS of an equine ‘bed and breakfast’ have won a long-running battle to open their doors in the Rossendale valley.

Stephen Anderson has wanted to build three holiday lets at the Pit Yard, in Dean Lane, Water, for some time.

An original application, with a manager’s flat, was withdrawn but he came back with blueprints for a slightly smaller building, office and quarantine stable.

The proposed development would provide accommodation for eight horse lovers and their own horses – reduced from an initial bid for 14.

But neighbours had still protested about the revised package, claiming it would lead to more congestion on the already-busy Dean Lane.

They also claimed the proposed ‘lets’ could be a masquerade for residential development – and questioned how this would be policed.

Residents were also concerned about the impact on other venues including The Commercial and other accommodation in Dean Lane and Burnley Road East – but commercial concerns are not considered by planners.

However Mr Anderson received the backing of tourism chiefs for his venture – amid claims the valley is not well-served by similar opportunities.

A Marketing Lancashire spokesman said: “Within the Rossendale area, there is limited self-catering accommodation available and the proposal would help to meet this demand, supporting the wider local economy within this rural part of the county.”

The tourism organisation was also impressed by the fact the developer had included plans for an accessible bathroom within the complex and members of Rossenadle Council’s development control committee voted to approve the proposals.

Currently there are nine commercial stables at the site, leaving a total parking requirement of 14 spaces, including provisions for horse-boxes.