Back of the net anger for Town

Councillors Ruth and Ian Duffy with Fleetwood resident John Goodfellow (right) who is unhappy with the high netting erected at the back of his home by Fleetwood Town FC.
Councillors Ruth and Ian Duffy with Fleetwood resident John Goodfellow (right) who is unhappy with the high netting erected at the back of his home by Fleetwood Town FC.

UNHAPPY neighbours have hit out at Fleetwood Town FC for putting up 25ft netting at the back of their homes.

A local councillor has now got involved in the dispute and said the football club – currently flying high in League Two – has been told by development chiefs to cease work on the netting until it is given planning permission.

The club says the net was put in place to keep stray balls in Highbury.

Coun Ruth Duffy, and her husband fellow Mount ward councillor Ian, want the council to enforce the removal of the netting until the issue comes before planners.

Mrs Duffy said: “We have every sympathy with the neighbouring residents over this. The netting was erected without permission and with a total lack of regard to their concerns. “It is made from very small mesh and coloured black which blocks huge amounts of light from homes.

“A couple of months ago planning officials at Wyre Council told the football club to cease work on this netting until it received planning permission.

“The council was seemingly mainly concerned about which type of materials were to be used.

“However, the football club totally ignored Wyre Council’s request and proceeded to erect the netting anyway.”

The netting has been placed behind a number of homes on Hatfield Avenue, whose rear gardens back directly onto the football stadium.

John Goodfellow, 66, of Hatfield Avenue, said:

“It is a total eyesore and it’s right at the back of our garden.”

Another resident, Tracey Whittle, 44, also of Hatfield Avenue, said residents had been to the local authority to try to put a stop to the nets, but nothing had been done.

Coun Ruth Duffy added: “We do support the Fleetwood Town and wish them every success. We’re just disappointed with the attitude of those at board level.”

A spokeswoman for Wyre Council confirmed the club has been told to stop the work while planning permission is sought.

She added: “When we received complaints, an officer attended and advised the club to stop work until they had obtained planning permission.

“An application has since been submitted and has yet to be determined.”

A Fleetwood Town spokesman said the club did not want to comment while the application was in progress.