Exhaust fumes from catering vans parked in Helston on Flora Day have been causing a stink amongst some residents.

The issue was raised at the last meeting of the town’s councillors, when one resident of Coinagehall Street complained about the “proliferation” of fast food stalls.

She claimed last year she counted seven in her street – eight if counting the ice cream van – and many appeared to be flouting the risk assessment sent to traders, which states petrol generators are not permitted.

Town clerk Chris Dawson said the form sent to traders was a Cornwall Council document adapted by the town council and admitted the part about generators must have been missed.

“We do need generators on Flora Day,” he said. “Some will ask for power from shops but most will have to bring their own power with them.”

He added that he had spoken to the street stall superintendant and any stalls that would have generators had been moved away from the woman’s home this year, but stressed: “I’m afraid in Helston we can’t do without generators.”

However, the resident argued this was a problem that had risen up in the last few years, claiming that when she moved to Coinagehall Street in 1997 stalls were using bottled gas to power freezers and refrigerators.

She said last year saw an “absolute mushrooming” of generators.

Instead, she would prefer to see the “lovely” Helston Business Improvement Partnership gazebos in that street, advertising the town.

Councillor Mark Upton said he understood HBIP was looking into the possibility of getting power supply from the boxes that supply the street lights, as is done in Truro at similar occasions, but this was still yet to be confirmed.

Mayor Jonathan Radford-Gaby said: “That seems an excellent idea.”