PLANS for a new and improved beer garden at a social club in Peterlee have been given the stamp of approval by Durham County Council.

Earlier this year, plans were lodged with the authority for Peterlee Catholic Club.

The application aimed to extend the existing smoking/garden area facing Grampian Drive and to install extra fencing around the club.

This included a wooden fence with an access gate at the front and a green metal mesh fence to the side and rear of the premises.

According to planning documents, the application also aimed to boost security at the site.

During consultation, the council’s environmental health department said the development may lead to a “significant impact” without further controls.

As the club is in a residential area, concerns included the potential of noise and light nuisance.

A council report said: “Use of the extended outside area for patrons has the potential to cause nuisance to nearby sensitive receptors by way of lighting, as well as noise from the patrons and music played in the area.

“However, the officer considered that conditions restricting the hours of use of the outdoor area, the provision of amplified music and external lighting would be sufficient to mitigate the potential of a statutory nuisance.”

The report goes on to say: “Overall, the proposal would not have a detrimental impact on the character of the surrounding area or on highway safety.

“Subject to conditions, the proposals are unlikely to have any significant adverse impacts on the amenities of neighbouring residents.”

Durham County Council’s planning authority approved the plans on Monday, November 9.

Under planning conditions, the use of the extended outdoor area/beer garden will be limited to no later than 9pm on any night.

In addition, no amplified music is allowed within the outdoor seating area and any external lighting must be positioned to reduce impact to neighbours.