HOME owners overlooking school sports pitches fear their view could be ruined by giant floodlights.

A planning application has been submitted to put up six 14-metre high lights on the playing fields at Queen’s College, in Taunton.

A number of people living nearby have voiced their concern at the proposed development on an artificial multi-use facility.

Neighbours in nearby Ferndale Drive have lodged complaints with Taunton Deane Council. They claim their view will become “totally dominated” by the lights – the columns will be just 26 metres from the nearest home and the rural and open nature of the area will be changed.

They also point out that a similar scheme for a hockey pitch was withdrawn in 2006 in favour of retractable lights, which are still in position.

Comeytrowe Parish Council supports the application on the condition ‘telescopic’ columns are used.

In its application, the college says the floodlights would allow evening use of the pitches by the school and local sports clubs until 9pm from October to March.

It adds that strong winds could cause problems with retractable lights and its proposals include fitting an ‘optivisor’ to ensure “light is directed even more accurately so as to avoid any spillage towards the adjoining residential properties”.

Queen’s site manager Peter Evans declined to comment.

Taunton Deane planners are recommending councillors to grant conditional approval for the floodlights when they discuss the application on Wednesday (May 21).