Plans to open a new betting shop has prompted fears from it will encourage more public boozing by excited punters.

Coral Racing Limited have applied for permission to open the shop in Balham Station Road, Balham, at the site of a former dry cleaners.

A planning document submitted to Wandsworth Council lists plans to change the use of the shop for financial services, while there are no plans to change the structure or expand the building.

But neighbours living in the area said they are concerned of the proposed shop's close proximity to a pub, with street drinking already a problem in the high street.

Critics are also concerned the shop will disrupt a major refurbishment project in Balham, which has been granted £1.9m from the Mayor of London's Outer London Fund (OLF).

Sally Maclean, of  Tantallon Road, said: "I have particular concern about its proposed proximity to the Half Moon pub which cannot be a good thing.

"And I am worried about pushing my two-year-old past gaggles of drunk and potentially angry and upset betters.

"We already have problems with drunk people hanging around that part of the pavement; our main route to the shops which we use regularly."

Francois-Xavier Bery, of Brierley Road, said: "I have seen a huge amount of antisocial behaviour including street drinking and people using abusive language outside and nearby such premises in Balham and can't see how granting this application would improve the character of the high street or the choice of shops available to the average shopper."

Coral Racing Limited declined to comment.

A final decision will be made by the Council's planning committee at a later date.