Councillors have been urged to approve a controversial housing estate on grazing land on the outskirts of an East Lancashire borough despite more than a dozen objections.

Burney Council's development control committee will debate the plans for 36 new homes on the site of a former reservoir when it meets on Thursday night.

It has been recommended to approve the schem,e west of Heckenhurst Avenue in Brownside, proposed by developer Applethwaite Ltd.

A report by planning officer Janet Filbin recommends 33 conditions and the negotiation of a contribution running into thousands of pounds from the firm towards affordable housing, public open space improvements, greenway creation, new reservoir walls and drainage before building work starts.

This is despite objections from Worsthorne Parish Council and 16 nearby residents.

The proposal is for 36 houses (10 three bedroom and 26 four bedroom) on the site at the west end of Heckenhurst Avenue.

The 3.8 acre site is currently open grazing fields.

Worsthorne Parish Council objected to the development on grounds of increased traffic in Brownside Road and adjoining streets particularly at peak times, the cumulative impact of previous developments in the area totalling 84 new homes, and the need for extra primary school places.

The council received 11 letters of objection from 16 households in Heckenhurst Avenue and Riddings Avenue raising multiple concerns including the destruction of countryside, the over-development of Brownside village, the rise in traffic to dangerous levels increasing the likelihood of accidents, insufficient car parking, the lack of local school places, and the strain on local doctors/hospitals.

A letter from Peter Hornby, the former chairman of the Burnley Wildlife Conservation Forum, objects to the loss of grassland creating 'inappropriate excessive urban sprawl in the Pennine landscape ' and the loss of a valuable wildlife habitat used by a range of upland breeding bird species including the Meadow Pipit, Skylark, Curlew and Lapwing.

Ms Filbin's report concludes: "The proposal would provide an appropriate development on a site allocated for this purpose and has been sensitively designed to reflect the character of the local area and to have regard to the amenities of adjacent properties.

"The relatively small increase in traffic using Brownside Road can be accommodated and measures to improve nearby bus stops and provide a new off-site greenway route would promote travel by bus, walking and cycling and give greater access to the countryside for recreation. "