SOCIAL club bosses criticised councillors who issued leaflets warning residents the club will play loud music until the early hours.

Liberal Democrats from Colchester’s Castle ward delivered the notices to homes near Belle Vue Social Club, in Colne Bank Avenue.

The club wants to open until 2am on Fridays and Saturdays, selling alcohol and playing music until 1.30am.

The leaflets say if the application is allowed, music and noise from people leaving the premises would go on for longer.

Most members are in their seventies and use the venue for arts, bingo and cribbage.

Club secretary Sandra Knight said: “It makes us look as if we are a nightclub. We are a family club and, in the current climate, have to look at opportunities.”

Mrs Knight said none of the councillors contacted the club before the leaflets were distributed. Belle Vue can currently open until 12.30am on Fridays and Saturdays, serving booze and playing amplified music until midnight.

Lib Dem copuncillor Henry Spyvee said the notices were distributed after a resident raised concerns.

He said: “We haven’t had complaints about the club in the past. Now they have a smoking area, so people go outside more, something the club cannot avoid.

“Now, on top of that, they want to extend hours and people are saying they have put up with enough.’’ Mr Sypvee said leaflets had been delivered to residents in Colne Bank Avenue, North Station Road and Belle Vue Road.

If the council receives objections, its licensing sub-committee will debate the application.