RESIDENTS have raised concerns about the right of a shopkeeper to sell booze late into the night.

Earby resident Wendy Venables said alcohol-related disorder in the town had rocketed since the police station closed last December.

If Tasnim Koussar is allowed to sell alcohol from a shop in Colne Road until 11.30pm seven-day-a-week, she fears the problems could get worse.

The shopkeeper also runs the Nooze and Booze off licence, a few hundred yards along the stretch, where he has permission to sell alcohol until 10pm.

But under the latest proposal, his second off-licence will be able to sell booze for an extra one-and-a-half hours after any other shop in the town.

Mrs Venables, of Victoria Street, said problems had ‘substantially escalated’ after police presence was reduced in the town.

She explained: “Late night opening of the premises until 11.30pm every day of the week would encourage youths to meet and loiter outside the premises next to a busy main road of the A56, linking Colne and Skipton, proving a hazard not only to their own safety, but that of motorists and other road-users.

“There would be noise disturbance to the occupants of the flats located above the shops along the road.

“I believe the presence of a late-night opening retail premises selling alcohol would discourage people to feel that they would be able to safely walk past if youths were to be loitering outside in Colne Road, and the pavement is not particularly wide past the relevant premises.

“There is also the increased likelihood of litter and especially broken glass bottles, which are a significant hazard to children, pets and cyclists.”

Pendle Council’s Licensing Committee will discuss the application at Nelson Town Hall, at 9.45am on Friday.