A Barnoldswick councillor has been accused of attempting to “railroad” plans for a new access at Kelbrook Road’s memorial gardens.
Father and son John and Julian Broughton, who own Broughton’s Compressors in Kelbrook Road, have accused Coun. David Whipp of ignoring their protests and are unhappy with the idea to knock down part of the gardens’ back wall to create a new Mosley Street entrance.
The Broughtons say that they are in possession of deeds showing that the land the proposed new access will exit on to is a garage entrance in their ownership.
Lancashire County Council’s highways department has marked out what it believes to be highway, but the Broughtons dispute this and have painted out what they believe to be their land.
The Broughtons donated the land in which the gardens are situated to the town and these are currently undergoing long-standing £30,000 improvement works.
Julian Broughton said: “Councillors don’t seem to be listening to us that it is our land and are attempting to railroad the plans by trying to get (Lancashire County) council to redraw the lines to suit themselves.
“It’s going to be on our land, none of the residents around here want it, we think it’s dangerous and it wasn’t part of the original plan.”
At Barnoldswick Town Council’s annual meeting this month, Coun. Whipp highlighted the idea of creating an access off Mosley Street to open up the gardens as a thoroughfare.
He said this was something that had come out of a four-day consultation by a member of the public and it would work in a similar way to the recently-improved war memorial on the corner of Fernlea Avenue and Wellhouse Road in Barnoldswick.
Councillors unanimously agreed with the theory that opening up the area would combat the issue of youths gathering and drinking at the location and climbing over the back wall between the memorial gardens and Mosley Street.
But the Broughtons believe this will only bring the problem on to the street and Barlicker Alan Tudor has also started a petition which has attracted 42 signatures from residents living in Mosley Street, Park Street and Park Road.
Mr Broughton added: “I think Park Road and Mosley Street will become busy with people picking and dropping off for the new primary school as you won’t be able to park on Kelbrook Road.
“All the children will have to walk somewhere too and I think this will become the point of least resistance.”
Coun. Whipp has asked for the item to be discussed at Pendle Council’s West Craven Committee meeting on Tuesday and said historically there was an access to the gardens from Mosley Street and the disputed garage entrance area may be partly over adopted public highway.
Coun. Whipp said: “I think the word railroad is strong and not appropriate.
“The idea for the entrance came about as a result of consultation over many months and something which was from residents and interested parties concerned about the memorial gardens.”