AN application for funding improvements to the recreation ground has been put in place with help from Simon Goff and his staff at Burnley Borough Council's parks department.

It is hoped a new youth shelter, fencing around the playground which will help to deter dogs from fouling the area and a new surface under the swings which was damaged by vandalism will be provided.

Residents of Valley Gardens attended the meeting to express their dismay that permission has been granted by the County Council to Enviro Skips to have an End of Life vehicle-breaking facility on the firm's Hapton Valley Colliery site.

This means that scrapping of commercial vehicles will take place behind residents' houses. The people attending the meting said that the first time they had heard of the plan was when they saw it on the minutes of the parish council meeting. They feel aggrieved that they were not advised by the County Council about the venture.

Last year the residents were successful in bringing to a halt plans to site an animal waste incinerator on the former pit site.

Clerk of the council, Mrs Jo Garrigan, will write to the County Council and the councillors will discuss their views at June's meeting.

THE Mayor Elect of Burnley, Coun John Harbour, and County Coun Marcus Johnstone have been busy in Hapton introducing the prospective Labour MP for Burnley, Kitty Ussher, to the village - but not without a spot of drama!

Ms Ussher and Coun Harbour spent some time capturing an escaped cat for a distraught villager before meeting residents.

AT the meeting of the parish council, Coun Joan Lakeland was reappointed as chairman and Coun David Barritt as vice-chairman. Coun Pat Jones will continue to serve as the council's representative on the governing body of Hapton's CE/Methodist School.

THE new community beat manager PC Derek Mitchell attended the meeting of the parish council. PC Mitchell now has responsibility for Hapton following the departure of PC Tony Himycz. Derek can be contacted by voicemail on 01282 472046 or his mobile 07984 316889.

He reported the police community service officer (PCSO), who was first promised in April, then June will now start in August.

He also highlighted a break-in at one of the village shops and that two bikes and a quantity of garden tools had been stolen from a shed on Lyndale Road. A car parked on Simpson Street had also been damaged overnight.

PC Mitchell urges residents to report incidents as soon as they happen and however trivial they may seem.

PADIHAM'S council offices are now open Monday-Friday from 10.30am to 1pm. This is in order to provide an advisory service to anyone living in the Padiham area. This is part of Padiham councillors plan to make the Town Hall available to the public.