A SENIOR councillor has accused a housing developer of being ‘capitalist cowboys’ after its application to extend working hours on a 182-property estate was refused.

Persimmon Homes Lancashire had asked Pendle Council’s development management committee to allow deliveries and construction activity at its Deerwood Park site, off Knotts Drive in Colne, to start earlier and finish later.

Cllr Tony Greaves, the borough deputy leader, attended the meeting on Monday night to oppose the change.

He cited repeated complaints from neighbours over noise and nuisance often beginning before the permitted start time of 8am and ending after the finish limit of 6pm.

Persimmon has asked for the hours to be extended to 7.30am to 6.30pm but the committee unanimously rejected their application.

Attending as Waterside’s Liberal Democrat representative Cllr Greaves told the committee there was a long list of breaches by Persimmon of the rules and promises they had made to nearby residents.

He read out a list of problems including consistently breaching operating hours, lorries not being washed down before leaving the site loaded with earth, large amounts of mud on the roads, and dangerous lorry manoeuvres.

Cllr Greaves said: “This is all about the large number of wagons entering and leaving the site loaded with earth every day.

“If they are given greater time, what guarantee is there that they won’t turn up even earlier than they already do at 6 or 6.30am?

“Residents are fed up of this firm which is just behaving like capitalist cowboys.”

A Persimmon Homes Lancashire spokesman said: “The Deerwood Park development will deliver 182 much-needed homes for local people.

“We applied to extend the working hours at the site to build the scheme as quickly as possible, to limit the disruption to local residents and meet customer demand.

“We have held regular meetings with all stakeholders in recent months, to keep everyone informed of progress on site and operations which are taking place.

“All contractors and suppliers have been, and will continue to be, regularly reminded of the working hours for this development.

“Anyone with concerns is welcome to raise them direct with the site manager or contact the Persimmon Homes management team at the Lancaster regional head office.”

The decision confirmed an earlier rejection of the hours extension by Pendle Council’s Colne and District Committee.