Accrington Stanley could be forced to tear down their hospitality suite and supporters bar after retrospective planning permission for the development was rejected.

The club was granted permission in 2020 to develop the south stand, which included the seated fan areas and other club facilities.

Permission was sought to demolish the ancillary club facility buildings, whilst retaining the existing stand, to be replaced by a new single-storey building containing a replacement club shop, manager’s office, player and officials changing and shower facilities, a repositioned tunnel, a new TV gantry, hospitality area, and a supporters bar.

Lancashire Telegraph: The hospitality suite at Accrington StanleyThe hospitality suite at Accrington Stanley (Image: Archive)

Development took place following the granting of permission but was found to not be in accordance with the approved plans.

Hyndburn Council said a building had been completed containing a hospitality lounge (the 1968 Lounge) and supporters bar (Coley’s), but the internal layout differed such that it “represents a significant divergence from the previously approved scheme and cannot be considered to be an implementation of the planning permission already granted".

Stanley therefore sought retrospective planning permission in order to regularise the development, but this was turned down by the planning committee at their meeting on Wednesday (January 17).

READ MORE: Accrington Stanley stand changes recommended for approval

Councillor Munsif Dad said he believed the application was refused on the grounds of it causing a detrimental impact on local amenities, and due to noise and pollution.

The club was issued a noise abatement order in December 2022 due to concerns raised by neighbours from events held in the facilities, which led to concerts being cancelled and club owner Andy Holt handing his freedom of the borough medal back in anger.

Five objections for these plans were received from neighbouring properties, with concerns raised such as why a planning application had been submitted when work was completed, disruption of sleep due to noise, light pollution in rear gardens, and devaluation of property, amongst others.

Councillor Terry Hurn, Mayor of Hyndburn and vice-chair of the planning committee, said: “The planning officers more or less had given it permission to go.

"They said there was no problem with it and they were recommending for it to be approved.

"We had one or two who abstained and others turned it down, and there was only one voting for it and that was the chair.

Lancashire Telegraph: The Wham StadiumThe Wham Stadium (Image: Archive)

“Accrington Stanley is a big part of the town. It represents Accrington, it brings in business, it brings in money to the town, and I was quite surprised the committee didn’t feel it warranted its backing.”

Councillor Peter Britcliffe, acting leader of the council, said: "I was surprised by the decision as I thought the planning application was strong. Accrington Stanley is an important part of our community, and over the past year we have worked closely with the club and local residents to resolve the situation.

"After much hard work, and having taken expert advice from acoustic consultants we arrived at a position were officers were able to recommend approval of the application.

"Whilst the chair of the committee supported the recommendations, they were not supported by the committee as a whole. Accrington Stanley have a right to appeal this decision, and in the meantime we will continue to work with them. We hope to achieve a positive outcome for the both the club and nearby residents."

The recommendation had been for the planning permission to be approved subject to certain conditions.

Lancashire County Council Highways did not raise any objections to the plans, alongside United Utilities, Altham Parish Council, HBE Environmental Health, and the Lead Local Flood Authority.

Other members of the Hyndburn Council planning committee have been contacted for comment.