CHILDREN in Huncoat have launched a petition to stop the council building on their local playing fields.
Siblings Hollie, 14, and Lewis Southward, 11, have collected more than 180 signatures in objection to Hyndburn Council’s proposals to build houses on greenbelt land on Bolton Avenue.
The land has been used for football practice by local teams since the 1950s.
The brother and sister say members of Huncoat Utd JFC will have nowhere to play if plans for the houses get the go ahead. Hollie said: "My younger brother and I have lived here all our lives and there's nowhere else nearby for us to go.
"We used to play on the fields for Huncoat Utd and they are always busy on a Saturday.
"I think it would be really unfair to build there. I’m not sure the council is really going to listen to people our age but it's worth a try."
The playing fields were first used as the home ground of St Augustine's Junior FC in the Accrington Boys league from 1958 until 1964.
For 51 years the site has been used by St Augustine’s JFC, Huncoat JFC, Huncoat Dynamoes JFC and for the last 25 years, Huncoat Utd JFC.
Ann Southward, 40, who lives with Hollie and Lewis, and husband Graham, 40, said: "The council was supposed to run a consultation with local residents between January and September 2009 but there has been no direct written consultation with us until last week when someone came to my door.
"Even Prince Charles wants to preserve the green pockets of our society.
"Huncoat JFC will lose their home, and players may never grace these pitches again."
Huncoat Utd JFC coach Jason Battle and under 9s coach Mark Hope said they are behind the petition.
Jason said: "It’s a matter of children playing their sport and keeping them off the streets."
Councillor Peter Britcliffe Leader of the Council said: "We welcome this petition and I have asked councillors to consider it when drawing up the brief for this area."