AN AWARD-WINNING microbrewery will launch its new tap bar this week.

Horwich-based Blackedge Brewery will open its second tap bar in the borough on Friday.

The new Westhoughton premises, formerly used as a shopfront for Horwich Carpet's, was granted a licence to sell alcohol and play live music after a town hall hearing yesterday.

The hearing was called after a Wood Street resident, who lives a few hundreds yards away, raised noise concerns.

In a letter, Audrey Manifold told the council about "extremely loud sounds levels" from Lounge 7, a bar on Market Street which is now closed.

She said residents were "severely disrupted and disturbed" when it was open, claiming that music could be heard from the bar above the sound of the television in their homes and continuing into the early hours of the morning.

The objector, who described her job as "extremely demanding", was fearful of any potential disturbance from the new tap bar.

She said: "I feel very strongly that any noise intrusion and disturbance would have a most detrimental and intolerable effect on the wellbeing of the residents who live nearby."

But the brewery's co-founder Wayne Roper assured the licensing sub-committee would not attract a rowdy clientele and said that the new bar would close an hour and half earlier than most in the area.

He said: “We’ve got residential properties in close proximity to the [Horwich] bar. In five years we've had no complaints from local residents including the flats directly behind us. The bar in Westhoughton will be focused on selling cask beers – not cheap lagers, spirits or shots."

The premises licence granted allows the tap bar to open until 11.30pm from Sunday to Thursday and until midnight on Friday and Saturday.