RESIDENTS are urging councillors to throw out plans by takeaway outlets to stay open until midnight.

There have already been complaints made to the Local Government Ombudsman about the operation of hot food shops in Eastbourne Road, Middlesbrough.

Now Amigo's and La Rosa Pizzeria, both in Eastbourne Road, and Fernando's pizza takeaway, in nearby Saltersgill Avenue, are applying to the council to be licensed to stay open until midnight.

More than 100 residents have signed a petition against the applications in Eastbourne Road.

And Beechwood Community Council is strongly objecting to the application from Fernando's.

Community council chairman Brian Robinson said anti-social behaviour was a daily occurrence in that area, with youths congregating outside the premises, drinking alcohol, bottles being smashed, fights, and gardens used as toilets.

The organiser of the Eastbourne Road petition is a 73-year-old grandmother of seven, who is too frightened of reprisals to have her name published. She said: "The police do an excellent job and are very supportive, but life is a nightmare.

"The people who work at the town hall can go to their homes at night, but we have to put up with the people using these takeaways urinating near the library and against cars parked in the street.

"They don't have the litter and the noise and their street looking like a taxi rank.

"This is supposed to be a democracy,'' she said. "We don't want to see them all have extended openings, but if they closed at 11.30pm and were given half an hour to clean-up, by midnight it could be a quiet area again."

Members of Middlesbrough Council's licensing sub committee will today consider the applications for midnight licences.

Omar Noory Said, owner of Fernando's, and Goran Nasseh, proprietor of La Rossa Pizzeria, say in their application to the council that security cameras are installed in their shops and music is not played, as this could encourage teenagers to congregate in or outside the premises.

Ali Akhtar, who has run Amigo's for 15 years, said he has security cameras and his business had always been conducted safely and without causing public nuisance.