BOROUGH councillors will be asked to grant permission for up to 60 homes on green land to help Blackburn with Darwen Council sell it off to developers.

A planning application is set to go before next week's planning and highways committee seeking outline approval for as many as 60 homes on the land at Clarendon Road East in Little Harwood.

The application site is primarily owned by Blackburn with Darwen Council with a small corner of the site being in unknown ownership.

If permission is granted, the intention is for the council to dispose of the land to a developer under an informal tender process.

Planning officer Claire Booth is asking members to approve the development.

In a report to go before teh committee, she said: "It is recognised that the proposals will result in the loss of 1.8 hectares of land allocated as green infrastructure.

"It is considered that the loss of green infrastructure can be compensated for by securing planning contributions from the developers.

"This is deemed necessary to ensure any loss is compensated for.

"It is also considered that planning conditions can be used to ensure a large proportion of trees are retained on site, particularly those around the boundaries of the site, as part of any future reserved matters application and that the developers ensure that a biodiversity net-gain is secured as part of the development."

Details relating to layout, scale, appearance and landscaping would all be submitted as part of a separate reserved matters application following successful granting of outline planning permission.

The site currently comprises of open fields separated by trees and shrubs.

Nine letters of objection to the proposals were received by council bosses.

They focused on concerns including speeding traffic, congestion on the roads and impact on infrastructure such as doctor's surgeries and schools, as well as the loss of green space and impact on wildlife.

Julie Walsh, who lives on Clarendon Road East, said: "The development would cause a total feeling of overcrowding and too much congestion on the road.

"The likelihood of accidents will increase.

"There are quite a few families with small children who will fear to leave their front gates.

"The cars speed up and down the road presently but with 60 more houses in the area this would be unbearable.

"The facilities in the area are limited as it is so the thought of 60 more families trying to access them doesn’t bear thinking about."

Fellow Clarendon Road East resident June Bennison added: "There are problems with traffic speeding up and down this road, and congestion in the mornings with the amount of traffic using it.

"We already have problems getting doctors appointments, so another 200 plus people is going to cause real problems.

"Where are the children going to go to school when the local schools are already at bursting point?

"This is the only piece of green land we still have, what about the wild life, there have been roe deer on the land recently, plus rabbits and nesting birds.

"I think we have had enough houses build in Little Harwood over the past few years - we are being smothered."

Committee members will decide on the application during the meeting at Blackburn town hall next Thursday.