THE deaf and mute manager of a Blackburn nursery has called for action to tackle drunks fighting and swearing outside the nearby Salvation Army hostel.

Chantelle de la Croix appealed in person to senior councillors for a crackdown on bad behaviour on King Street and Heaton Street.

She told Blackburn with Darwen Council's executive board about problems outside Bramwell Lifehouse upsetting infants at King’s Nursery and St Anne’s RC Primary School on Feilden Street.

Speaking through a sign interpreter, Ms de la Croix said: “I am concerned about the behaviour of some people from the Salvation Army hostel on Heaton Street.

“Many are alcoholics drinking on the street, sometimes fighting and shouting, using bad language. It is not good for nursery children, especially when they play outside.

“The problem seems to be getting worse.”

St Anne’s head teacher Barbara Cuff said: “It is not good for children in the playground. It’s definitely getting worse.”

Borough lead member for neighbourhoods Arshid Mahmood said: “We have asked police for a greater presence and will approach management at the THOMAS drop-in facility to agree a process of moving people on.

“We will no longer tolerate such behaviour and are taking action against owners of hostels and houses of multiple occupation to reinforce the message.”

A Salvation Army spokesman said: “We work with some of the most vulnerable people in society. Our staff have been in contact with the local authority to ‘safe clean’ the area. We have taken steps to make service users aware of the feelings locally and to work out the best way of eradicating any problems.”

A Lancashire Police spokesman said: “We are aware of the concerns and we will work with partners to address them, taking appropriate action where necessary.”