RESIDENTS will be able to see into the future after Burnley was chosen to pioneer a special piece of ground-breaking technology.

The handheld computers have been programmed with three dimensional computer images of how Burnley Wood will look after a multi-million pound regeneration under the Elevate scheme.

They detect the current location so that as the person holding it walks around the streets of Burnley Wood, the computer will show how that area will look.

The borough was selected from towns and cities from throughout the country to trial the scheme.

Elevate, the housing market renewal programme, teamed up with BT to bring the Augmented Reality Interactive Environment System (ARIES) to the town.

The £25,000 scheme was launched in Burnley Wood yesterday where swathes of homes are set to be demolished and face-lifted in the coming years.

Kathleen Houghton, Elevate communications director, said: "The people of Burnley are not afraid of technology which is why this area has been chosen as the first to trial this new technology.

"We used text messages as a way of community consultation which was well received." The BT's Andy Gower added: "This is a community consultation tool and will help enhance the usual planning process.

"The ARIES system has got built-in GPS to help track where the person is and show them what the area will look like in the future. They can also record thoughts in private as they are walking around which means they don'y have to stand up at a packed meeting and voice their views."

Council leader Gordon Birtwistle said: "The new executive is extremely keen to consult with residents.

"We won't embark on anything unless we have support from residents some people think that we go over the top with community consultation but we think it's the best way to do things.

"I am delighted that Burnley has been chosen to pioneer this."