A FITNESS centre will be opened in a residential area, despite fears it could cause anti-social behaviour.

A former motorcycle repair shop on Crosby Street, Darlington, will be converted into a fitness centre after planning permission was agreed at a meeting of the town’s planning committee yesterday (Wednesday February 12).

Councillor Anne-Marie Curry told the meeting that residents were concerned the development would create excess noise, parking issues and potentially attract anti-social behaviour, such as drug dealing.

She said: “A lot of people are objecting because of the businesses that were there before.

“There were a lot of issues with parking, noise and drug dealing from the property which caused a lot of upset and residents are worried it could happen again.”

She suggested that visitors using the facilities should be asked not to park on the street but to move their cars elsewhere and walk to the centre.

She said: “If these people are wanting to be fit and healthy then they could walk to the gym and that would be beneficial for their health.”

The centre, which will be open seven days a week, will offer fitness classes, personal training sessions, health education and sports rehabilitation facilities.

Parking for up to 12 vehicles will be provided at the rear of the property.