An application to convert a nursery in Sawtry into a butcher’s shop is set to be considered by councillors after objections were raised locally.

Huntingdonshire District Council's development management panel will meet next Monday to consider plans to convert the Sawtry Pre-school Playgroup building, in Fen Lane, into a butcher's shop.

The applicants, Mr and Mrs Francis, told the council they had been seeking to open a shop in the village for more than a year.

The applicants added that, if permission was granted, there would be two full-time staff employed at the site.

Despite backing from planning officials at the district council, however, the plans will have to be considered by a panel of councillors because Sawtry Parish Council recommended that application be refused, citing concerns over parking for customers of the shop.

Diane Davis, clerk to the parish council, said in correspondence with planning officials: "Sawtry Parish Council recommend refusal of the application due to concerns about the parking problems in the area caused by customers to the shop.

"Although the parish council would welcome the addition of a butcher's shop in Sawtry, it is felt that this is not the right location for it."

The concerns of the parish council were echoed by two neighbours of the premises, who told planning officials that they were also worried about customer parking in the area, as well as citing noise and disturbance among their objections.

Linda Walker, planning officer at the district council, has recommended the plans be approved by councillors.

In her report, she noted: "On-street parking is available in the locality, and it is considered, based on the nature of the business, that the vehicles generated would not put undue pressure on the highway network or cause significant issues regarding parking on the street.

"It is considered that as the proposal is an enhanced provision of a use that currently does not exist in the village, there will not be a detrimental impact on the highway network."

To find out more about the application, log on to www.huntingdonshire.gov.uk.