Plans to add extra lights to a council car park will lead to more problems with nuisance-causing youths, residents fear.

Copeland council looks set to upgrade the lights at its Catherine Street car park and build a new cycle and smoking shelter on the grounds.

But people living nearby have objected to the plans, saying more lights will have a "serious detrimental impact" on them and fear the area would become a hot spot for youths to gather and act unsocially.

The council, however, says the lights would be switched off at 8pm to help ease the problem, and it has also removed from its plans one of the proposed lights to the nearest property to cut down on light pollution.

Residents say there already is a problem with anti-social behaviour in the area and this will make it much worse.

Objectors said: "Since the car park was first lit, there's been an increase of anti-social behaviour from youths who have damaged local properties, caused intimidation, created disturbances and excessive noise and used it for drug use."

They also fear the new seated smoking shelter would become a meeting place for youths in evenings and weekends.

The council's planning panel are due to meet on Wednesday and were recommended by officers to give the application the green light.

There were two objections submitted to the plans.

A council officer said: "While the attraction of youths and the resultant anti-social behaviour is difficult to control, the reduction in a number of hours that the car park is lit should help suppress the current problems experienced by the local residents."

Although the council is proposing to increase the number of lighting columns, the new ones will be smaller and provide a safer environment for users of the site, said the authority.

"The concerns raised by the local residents have been noted and one of the lighting columns that was originally proposed on the eastern boundary has been removed from the scheme to minimise the impacts of light pollution on the occupants of the nearest residential properties," said the report.

A condition is likely to be attached to the approval, stating that the lights would be operational between 7am and 8pm.