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Saturday, 16 March 2019

The CAZ

We are very disappointed that BANES have chosen to go with option C rather than option D particularly if, as seems likely, this was done electoral reasons.

We are concerned that option C will deliver results much more slowly and may not actually meet EU and WHO standards particularly in the most heavily polluted parts of the city centre.

The decision to let people continue to bring their non-compliant diesel cars into the city will also mean additional particulate pollution which will almost certainly contribute to people having their health severely damaged.

However, given the elections and the already clear propensity of politicians to play politics with this issue we are urging that we now cease the debate and implement option C for which there is now a plan and identified finance.

Let's have something that will make a difference rather than more years of debate and inaction.

Saturday, 9 March 2019

The application to open a pub at the current Garfunkles premises

We are objecting to this application because we believe there is evidence that these premises already create nuisance which undermines the objectives of the Licensing Act and that there is a reasonable expectation that the applicant’s proposals will increase that nuisance without additional conditions.

This business is within the Empire building which is primarily residential and is home to many elderly residents, the premises are close to other noise and nuisance sensitive residential premises. The building is in the heart of the Cumulative Impact Zone and residents of the Empire regularly report disturbance outside. The current level of business at the existing restaurant means that complaints about noise and smoke in residential units are less than in the past but complaints about noise and smoke are still been made particularly in relation to the terrace. Since the purpose of this application is to increase business there is clearly a potential for nuisance to return to historic levels.

The use of the terrace is of particular concern both because it is the major source of nuisance to residences but also because of its potential to allow interaction between customers and passing crowds of people many of whom particularly at night, will be under the influence of alcohol.
It is worth noting that the terrace is directly under the windows of the nearest noise sensitive premises and that the applicants own noise advisors have expressed concern about the challenge this represents in preventing nuisance.

We believe this application will increase the potential for nuisance because it will increase the number of customers who are drinking alcohol and drinking alcohol without food. There are also indications in the applicant's submissions to BANES that they intend to increase the amount of vertical drinking or at the least do nothing to restrict it. From other premises, we know that an increase in vertical drinking independent of food leads to an increase in disorder.
The BANES cumulative impact policy creates a rebuttable presumption that applications for new premises licences, club premises certificates or variations relating to “on trade” premises situated within the Cumulative Impact Area, will be refused if relevant representations are received. In order to rebut this presumption, applicants must demonstrate that the operation of the premises will not add to the cumulative impact already being experienced.

While we must thank the applicant for the very considerable efforts they have made to engage with us and address our concerns and while considerable progress has been made in many areas we still contend that the applicant has failed to demonstrate that the operation of the premises will not add to the cumulative impact already being experienced.
We would all welcome the renovation and revitalisation of this important premises this should not be at the expense of residents quality of life nor a should it undermine council licensing policy.
To avoid this we would ask the committee to impose the following conditions:

  1. That alcohol should not be sold before 10 am in line with neighbouring premises.
  2. That alcohol should not be sold after 22.30 on a Sunday evening again in line with
    neighbouring premises.
  3. That substantial food should be available during all the hours when alcohol is being sold.
  4. That customers using the terrace must be seated and have drinks served by waiting staff
  5. There shall be no emptying of bottle bins outside the buildings outside following times,
    Monday to Sunday including bank holidays or public holidays 08.00 to 22.00 hours.
  6. A direct telephone number be available at all times the premises is open. The telephone
    number is to be made available to residents and businesses in the vicinity.’
  7. The outside area shall be used for the supply of food and/or drink only between the hours of
    9:00 and 22.00 and shall be cleared of customers by 22.30.