Meeting documents

Statutory Licensing Sub-Committee
Tuesday, 13th December, 2016 10.00 am

Date: Tuesday 13th December 2016 Time: 10.00 a.m. Place: Council Chamber, Civic Centre, Ebbw Vale

Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

PresentAndWithReport toReport of
Item/Resolution Status Action
Report (336K/bytes)
Appendix 1 (687K/bytes)
Appendix 2 (55K/bytes)
Appendix 3 (3M/bytes)

The Chair welcomed the Applicants, Members and Officers to the meeting, which had been convened in order to discuss the Variation of Premises Licence of The Garw, Carmel Street, Abertillery.

The purpose of the meeting was to inform the Committee of an application for the variation of a premises licence issued in accordance with the Licensing Act 2013.

At the invitation of the Chair, the Team Leader - Licensing read to the report.

The Chair invited Mr. I. Cole - DPS to address the Committee and speak on the application.

Mr. Cole spoke to the Committee and informed them that his premises was the last to apply for a 2.00 a.m. extension as other establishments in the Abertillery area had already acquired the extension and he wished to purely compete on a level playing field from a commercial perspective. He referred to the 'Kebab House' opposite The Garw which was one of the businesses that currently had the benefit of a 2.00 a.m. extension and stated that 90% of any disruption attributable to public nuisance was generated from this establishment. He added that there had never been any incidents or complaints at The Garw as Door Staff were employed to keep order and the hours of the door staff would also be extended should the variation be successful.

Mr. Cole informed the Committee that he had also spoken to a local shop owner who had indicated that they did not have any problem with the application. He also referred to Davey Evans Court and stated that he was currently looking at this premises for his 80 year old father, which he would not consider if he was in any doubt of there being a problem.

It was noted that Mr. Cole ran the 'Pub Watch Scheme' for over four years and he did not feel that he was an irresponsible publican.

The Solicitor reminded the committee that consideration had to be given to the licensing objectives recited at Paragraph 2.8 of the report and that members should not attach weight to commercial considerations when reaching their decision concerning the licence variation application.

The Chair asked Mr. Cole what his intentions were concerning the 'Burger Van' situated outside his premises. Mr Cole indicated that it had initially been acquired for business purposes but found that it would have proved quite costly so he had decided not to proceed with its use and indicated to Members that the van would be removed from the premises in the New Year.

The Chair asked Mr. Cole if he would like to sum up and he stated that he would purely request an even playing field in relation to licensing hours. He referred to customers presently leaving his establishment early to frequent other establishments that had the benefit of a 2.00 a.m. licence who would remain in The Garw if this premises had a 2.00 a.m. licence.

The Solicitor asked if Mr. Cole would also require the extension for late night refreshments and Mr. Boulton said that they would be willing to withdraw this if needed.

The Applicants and Officers withdrew from the meeting at this juncture in order to allow the Sub-Committee to deliberate in private.

The Committee discussed the application and a decision was unanimously reached.

The Applicants were invited back into the Meeting.

The Chair asked the Solicitor to read out the decision of the Licensing Sub-Committee to the applicant and his DPS.

The application before the Licensing Sub-Committee was made by way of a variation of a Premises Licence at the Garw, Carmel Street, Abertillery, Blaenau Gwent.

The applicants made an application for Variation of the Premises License to increase the permitted licensing hours at the premises, to extend the hours of all current licensable activities from 1.00 a.m. - 2.00 p.m.

Members, when considering the application for Variation of the Premises License, were aware that they should have regard to all representations made to them today and to take one of the following actions:

1. To grant the application
2. To reject the whole or part of the application
3. To grant the application with modifications to the conditions

Members were made aware that copies of the application were sent to the specified Authorities with Gwent Police making representations.

Conditions were agreed with the license holder and Gwent Police have decided to withdraw their representations.

Comments were received from 28 "other persons" 5 withdrew their representations, however, others making representations still wish to object to the application on grounds of Public Nuisance and Prevention of Crime and Public Disorder.

In considering this application, the Sub-Committee are aware that they must take into account the provisions of the Licensing Act 2003 and in particular the licencing objectives which are:

1. Prevention of Crime and Disorder
2. Public Safety
3. The Prevention of Public Nuisance
4. The protection of children from harm

And also consider the guidance issued by the Home Office under Section 182 of the Act, and the Council's Licencing Policy.

The designated premises supervisor Mr. I. Cole, addressed the Committee, explaining that he had a dozen temporary event notices at the premises and he experienced no issues of public disorder. He informed members of the Sub-Committee that the only disorder seen in the vicinity of the premises was seen at the adjacent kebab shop and that 90% of problems were generated from this establishment. He added that there had never been any incidents or complaints at The Garw as Door Staff were employed to keep order and the hours of the door staff would also extended should the Variation be successful and that his door staff could deal with any problems seen in the street.

The Sub-Committee are aware of the representations made by interested parties, who felt that if the variation was granted, it could result in the undermining of the following licencing objectives:

1. Prevention of Crime and Disorder
2. The Prevention of Public Nuisance.

Members were particularly concerned with written representations received from interested parties who indicated that residents suffer from noise nuisance particularly when the premises doors are left open and as patrons enter and exit the premises, and that the noise nuisance continues well into the early hours of the morning as patrons of the Garw mill around Carmel Street after the Garw has closed. They feel that an extension of the licencing hours will further exacerbate noise and that further problems will be seen in the vicinity of Davy Evans Court and Chapel Street Abertillery, should the application be successful, this will have a detrimental impact on their quality of life. Other residents were concerned with noise nuisance from the Garw, indicating that they were unable to get to sleep until 1.30 a.m. or 2.00 a.m. with all the shouting and fighting that they have to put up with. Also another resident drew the Sub-Committee's attention to the anti-social behaviour that was a major problem, outlining other problems of loud music, urinating in carparks, doors slamming and rowdy drunken behaviour.

Members listened carefully to Mr. I. Cole, who informed them that they should consider a level playing field concerning the Garw as other licensees had a 2.00 a.m. licence and this discrepancy cost the premises loss of revenue.

In reaching a decision, Members have considered written evidence of the other persons, and carefully considered Mr. Cole's comments concerning the incidents at the nearby Kebab Shop and consider that the quality of life will be further diminished if the extended hours applied for were to be granted. Members have concerns that should a licence be granted to 2.00 a.m. more persons will be leaving the premises onto the streets at the same time, fearing that this may give scope to an increase of Crime and Public Disorder and Public Nuisance which will be in direct contradiction of two of the licencing objectives.

However, Members have some sympathy with the License Holder and DPS and are prepared to recommend an extension of licencing hours, covering all licensable activities to 1.30 a.m. which should allow smooth dispersal of persons from the area and lessen the scope for contravention of the licensing objectives.

The Designated Premises Supervisor and Licence Holder were informed by the Council's Solicitor that they had the right of Appeal to the Magistrates Court against the decision of the Committee if they felt it appropriate to do so within 28 days of today's date.

RESOLVED that the Application for the Variation of a Premises Licence be granted for 1.30 a.m.

It was noted at the end of the meeting that Mr. Cole had indicated to the Licensing Officer that he had a number of letters of support from residents and the Officer informed him that these should have been presented prior to the Meeting.