Application for a grant of a premises licence in respect of 'MaryGold, 14-15 Union Street, Hereford. HR1 2BT'- Licensing Act 2003
To consider an application for a grant of a premise licence in respect of ‘MaryGold, 14-15 Union Street, Hereford. HR1 2BT’.
Members of the licensing sub committee of the council’s planning and regulatory committee considered the above application, full details of which appeared before the Members in their agenda and the background papers.
Emma Bowell, Technical Licensing Officer, presented the report.
Elizabeth Laughland, Principal Environmental Health Officer, confirmed that all the environmental protection representations had now been agreed with the applicant.
Police Sergeant Duncan Reynolds of West Mercia Police then outlined the police’s objection to the granting of a new premises licence:
· The premises were on Union Street, Hereford, which was in an area with a high concentration of licensed premises including fast food outlets, pubs and clubs.
· A special cumulative policy was in place which meant that particular
attention to new or variation licences was required. The statutory S182 guidance stated that it was a reasonable assumption that new licences or variations should not be allowed in areas where there was a special cumulative policy but that each request needed to considered on their own merits.
· The premises had had a licence until July 2018 under previous name but since this date no licence had been in existence. It was unfortunate that an interim authority notice had not been submitted.
· The premises had been contacted in January 2019 and encouraged to apply for a new licence. Advice had been offered but this had been ignored and the premises had operated without a licence.
· The police had visited twice and on both occasions the premises had been open and alcohol was being served.
· A letter had been sent to the owner of the business with written advice and this appeared to have been ignored.
· These incidents showed a disregard for the law.
· A meeting between the applicant and the police had taken place and whilst the applicant was apologetic, the police still had concerns.
· The premises had been operating without a licence to sell alcohol or serve late night refreshments for 236 days.
· The police’s position was to object outright to the grant of a new premises licence. However, if the sub committee were minded to grant, then the police would request that the front of the premises did not form part of the licensable area. The reason was that Union Street was a through-route to the city centre and the police had serious concerns that the premises could become a flash point. The police had no confidence in the applicant’s ability to prevent customers from taking alcohol away from the premises.
· The premises had previously been subject to a police review due to the employment of illegal migrants which demonstrated a lack of ability to uphold the licensing objectives. The police would also wish the sub-committee to consider modifying the licensable hours to those previously granted as to grant further licensable hours could be viewed as rewarding the applicant.
The sub-committee then heard from Mr Mikayeel Deen, the applicant, and the following points were made:
· He had been operating the premises for approximately the last five years and there had not been any incidents in front of the restaurant.
· With regard to the employment of illegal workers, he had corrected any issues with the employment checks and had never been taken to court.
· The licence had been in the name of a company and he was the designated premises supervisor (DPS). The company had been dissolved and changed into a sole trader business.
· His sister-in-law had not realised that there would need to be a change to the licence and there had been a breakdown of communication.
· He had gone to the licensing office and tried to renew or transfer the licence but had been informed that he needed a new licence.
· Customers at the restaurant tended to eat much earlier and were finished by 2200 hrs and after this there would only be a handful of customers left.
· In all the years that he had been at the premises, customers had only used the front to go out and have a cigarette. If customers were to take alcohol outside, he would get into trouble as he would not be outside and premises licence did not cover the front of the building.
· The licence was needed after 2200 hrs in case customers came in and he wanted to be able to serve them alcohol.
· Police officers were frequent customers of the restaurant and they are there until 0000 hrs. If he does not have a licence, then those customers will go to competitors.
· The restaurant employs 16 members of staff; 6 of whom have families
· MaryGold is the most successful restaurant in Herefordshire.
Following members’ questions, the following points were raised:
· A DPS would have a personal licence and as part of the training for this, a DPS would have full knowledge of the Licensing Act and the principles.
· The applicant had been in the restaurant trade for 20 years and had received training.
· The police confirmed that the letters from them had been hand delivered and had been followed up by the police with emails to the applicant.
· The applicant stated that there were four flats behind the restaurant and that post was also delivered to the restaurant which is where the issue appears to be.
· As soon as the applicant had been made aware that there was no licence, no alcohol had been served.
· Since 18 February, the applicant had applied for temporary event notices (TENS) and as a result of these no further police visits had been conducted.
The sub committee’s decision is to grant the premises licence for the interior of the premises only and no exterior area was included. Signs were to be displayed which stated that no alcohol was to be taken outside of the premises. The licensable hours are to 2330 hrs seven days a week and as applied for in respect of Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
The committee had listened to the applicant and the police and had taken into account from all the statements from the parties present. On the basis of the information provided by the applicant the sub committee was satisfied that a new premises licence should be granted. However given the concerns raised by the police the sub committee determined that the new premises licence should be granted subject to reduced hours to those applied for, with the exception of Christmas and New Year to reflect the primary restaurant use.
- MaryGold Committe report, item 17. PDF 115 KB
- Appendix 1 - Application Form, item 17. PDF 16 MB
- Appendix 2 - Environmental Protection Representation, item 17. PDF 53 KB
- Appendix 3 - West Mercia Police Representation, item 17. PDF 74 KB
- Appendix 4 - Agreed Environmental Protection Conditions, item 17. PDF 430 KB