A developer who wanted to demolish 30 old garages and build new homes on land behind terraced homes has had his application rendered invalid by the council.

Zeshan Ali, of Carr Road, Barrowford, wanted permission to demolish old garages on land behind terraced houses in Hamilton Road, Barrowford, and to build seven new homes.

The land currently accommodates approximately 30 garages, most of which are dilapidated and in a poor state of repair, and there are a number of protected trees on the site.

His planning application to Pendle Council began in June last year and has been changed with the number of proposed new homes reduced.

The latest version was recommended for approval by Pendle Council planning officers but the Barrowford and Western Parishes area committee voted to defer the application and called for the land behind Hamilton Road to be tested for stability.

The councillors decision came amid reports a digger vehicle sank into nearby land many years ago.

At the committee meeting, Mr Ali said he had "reports by experts which would address issues around flooding", and claimed people living in the vicinity had made racist comments towards him.

Objectors, which also included neighbouring residents, were unhappy about the size and design of the planned new homes, flooding, 'tight' car parking spaces and the protection of bats, which some claim live in the old trees.

The original plan had been for nine homes but had to be downsized following complaints, with residents citing protected trees, an "abundance of wildlife", and residents said Mr Ali has been knocked back numerous times.

Despite the recommendation for approval, on January 25 the application was deemed invalid.

It is not known whether Mr Ali will submit another application or give up on the plans.