TEMPORARY permission for dog kennels near the site of a woodland cemetery is set to be made permanent.

Last year, Blackburn with Darwen Council’s planning and highways committee granted 12-month temporary permission for the kennels near West Pennine Remembrance Park, Entwistle, which supply German shepherds to police forces across the country.

Grieving families had objected to the proposals, claiming burials had been interrupted by barking dogs, completely shattering the peace and quiet of the remembrance park.

Blackburn with Darwen Council officers were notified to the existence of the kennels in the park last year after complaints from residents about barking dogs.

But members granted permission and a follow-up report recommending permanent permission be granted is expected to be approved when the committee meets again next week.

Council planning officer, Nick Blackledge, has suggested a number of conditions be attached to limit the impact on the cemetery.

He said: "The principle of the proposal was established as acceptable through the original application process; insofar as the development was not considered to be inappropriate development within the green belt, on account of the site's brownfield status.

"The key assessment originally was the noise impact from barking dogs, in recognition of the potentially harmful impact to the surroundings; particularly the tranquillity of the remembrance park and nearby dwellings.

"The proposal was considered in this context and proportionate weight was applied to the likely effectiveness of the proposed noise mitigation.

"Given the absence of sufficient evidence that noise from the proposal will not prove excessively harmful to the surroundings and evidence to the contrary it was considered reasonable to apply a temporary 12 months permission, to allow the council the opportunity to monitor the use over this period to establish whether or not generated noise was harmful to the surroundings and whether a permanent permission could, therefore, be supported.

"The officer did not encounter excessive noise levels from within the application site on any of their eight visits. Noise witnessed was deemed to be very minor and barely audible from the nearest noise sensitive uses; considered to be the remembrance park and nearest residential properties.

"Consequently, the proposal is considered evidentially acceptable, in that it will not expose persons attending the remembrance park or local residents to excessive noise disturbance from barking dogs."

If approved, the paddock must not be used for the exercise of dogs at any time during an interment service and exercise of dogs will be limited to between 7am and 10.30pm.

the hours of 07:00 hours and 22:30 hours daily.

Occupancy of the kennels will be restricted to a maximum of 20 dogs and use will be limited to police dog breeding only.