YEAR four children at Padiham Green CE Primary School have turned into environmental campaigners since hearing the news that Shuttleworth Mead Business Park plans to expand along the Padiham Greenway.

Burnley Council’s Local Plan is considering options for future development across the borough and part of the proposed plans suggest building several new units along the beloved greenway, which was only revived five years ago.

Children at Padiham Green regularly use the Greenway for outdoor lessons about wildlife and nature, and also use it as part of their usual route to school.

Deputy headteacher Janet Ennis said that the children were ‘upset’ when they heard the news.

She said: “They don’t want to lose the Greenway as it is a big part of their lives and of their education. Five years ago, the school was involved in regenerating the Greenway and did a fabulous job.

“Prior to that, it was being used, basically as a dumping ground, but now it’s a beautiful walk and is used by everyone, mums pushing prams, wheelchair users, people on bike rides, not to mention us here at the school.

“It’s a brilliant place to see wildlife and it is just awful to think that industrial units will be put here and ruin what the greenway has to offer.”

The plans have proved unpopular with residents who are keen to see the land saved and who have begun campaigning to save the area.

Year four children wanted to get involved with the campaign and have each designed a poster to pin up along the Greenway, urging people to say ‘No’ to the plans.

Yesterday, Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle visited the Greenway with the children and helped them put up their campaign posters.

Mr Birtwistle said: “I am really impressed with these children and their brilliant posters.

“They want to keep Padiham Greenway as it is a lovely walk, a lovely park and a haven for wildlife.

“They don’t want industrial units spoiling what they’ve got and I totally agree with them.”