Greenwich Council

Agenda item.

The Duchess Public House, 1 Woolwich Road, SE10 0RA

Application to review the existing Premises Licence

Decision:

In reaching its decision the Sub Committee considered the Council’s statement of Licensing Policy, the Licensing Act 2003, the Regulations made there under and the Guidance issued by the Secretary of State under S.182 of that Act. In discharging its functions the Sub Committee did so with a view to promoting the licensing objectives of the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.

 

The Sub Committee reviewed the premises licence of the

 

The Duchess Public House, 1 Woolwich Road SE10 0RA

 

and having considered all the evidence put before it the Sub Committee decided to-:

-               Revoke the Premises Licence;

 

The Sub Committee’s decision was based on issues raised concerning the licensing objectives of the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.

 

In reaching a decision, the Sub-Committee considered –

 

The verbal and written representations from the Police, the Trading Standards, Environmental Health, the Director of Public Health, local Ward Councillor and  local residents.

 

 

The Sub-Committee heard from the Police who referred to his written representations and also made oral representations stating his loss of confidence in the management of the licenced premises. The Police re-iterated his stance that the only option available was a revocation of the premises licence as modifying conditions would be ineffective for reasons that Mr Clements (the premises licence holder) had shown a lack of interest or willingness to continue in the licensing industry. The Sub-Committee placed significant weight on the representations of the Police.

 

The Sub-Committee heard that the Director of Public Health was in support of the review application.  Detailed written representations were referred to and it was emphasised that the absence of a management structure on the licenced premises was a real concern that children were able to access alcohol with no checks or challenge from staff. The Sub-Committee accepted the representations of the Director of Public Health.

 

The Sub-Committee listened to Councillor Brain who made representations on behalf of himself and local residents in support of the application for a revocation of the premises licence. He referred to his written representations and repeated his concern that children had been seen in and at the bar and also playing on the gaming machines at the licensed premises. He stated that he had heard loud music emanating from the licensed premises, witnessed the abusive behaviour to passers-by (particularly women) by patrons and that dogs tied to railings by patrons had been threatening to pedestrians. When asked by the Sub-Committee as to whether he had ever seen the licensed premises run well he stated that the licensed premises had always been badly run but that it had deteriorated since it became known as the ‘The Duchess’. The Sub-Committee were persuaded by the representations of the local Ward Councillor and gave it considerable weight.

 

The Sub-Committee placed great weight on all the representations and noted that the licensed premises holder had not attended the meeting nor offered any written objections.

 

In considering the application the Sub-Committee were mindful of paragraph 3.6 of the Licensing Policy which states that “The Royal Borough recognises that well-run premises can make a valuable, positive contribution to the local community through the local economy, tourism and cultural development. However, if they are not properly managed and controlled, licensed premises ….. can become a serious source of crime and disorder or anti-social behaviour problems” and found:

 

·        That there was compelling representations and overwhelming evidence that all four licensing objectives were being undermined

·        It was not appropriate to modify the conditions on the premises licence as it would not address the concerns raised concerning the lack of management control over the running of the licensed premises, criminal activity and anti-social behaviour

·        That revocation of the premises licence was the only appropriate and proportionate measure to be taken in order to promote the licensing objectives of Prevention of Crime and Disorder, Public Safety, Prevention of Public Nuisance and Protection of Children from Harm.

 

No decision made by the Council will have effect during the time period within which an appeal may be brought and until such time that any appeal has been determined or abandoned.

 

The applicant for review, holder of the Premises Licence, or any other person who made relevant representations to the application may appeal against the Council’s decision to the Magistrates Court.  Such an appeal must be submitted to the Magistrates Court within 21 days of the date from when the appeal period is deemed to have started, which will be stated in the cover.

Minutes:

In attendance:

 

Applicant for Review

Sergeant Simon Henderson, Metropolitan Police (Greenwich) Licensing Team

 

Making Representation

Christina Millette, Public Health, Royal Borough of Greenwich

Councillor Stephen Brain

 

The Licence Holder, Mr Jason Clement, was not in attendance and the Committee agreed to proceed in his absence in accordance with The Licensing Act 2003 (Hearings) Regulations 2005 section 20(b).

 

The Chair welcomed all parties and ensured that introductions were made, all papers had been received and that all parties were aware of their right to be represented. 

 

The Sub-Committee considered an application made by the Metropolitan Police (Greenwich) Licensing Team for a Review of the existing Premises Licence for The Duchess, 1 Woolwich Road SE10 0RA. 

 

The Licensing Officer gave an illustrated introduction to the report. 

 

The Sub-Committee was addressed by the Applicant for Review.  The Applicant explained that the Review had been sought as the Metropolitan Police had lost all confidence in the licence holder and Designated Premises Supervisor’s (DPS) ability to manage the premises. He highlighted an incident in September 2016 that had resulted in the windows being smashed, by a man who was allegedly barred but who had been drinking in the pub.  A further visit in October 2016 found a woman named Teresa behind the bar, who was intoxicated, and who stated that she was the manager. She said the DPS had left the premises 10 days earlier and she did not have a personal licence.

 

A meeting with the licence holder Jason Clement, who had made it clear that he had no interest in running the business, found that he was in the process of selling the business to Daniel Stares, the DPS. Daniel Stares, who also attended the meeting, gave a presentation and had good plans for the premises. This resulted in the Metropolitan Police allowing the premises to remain open.

 

Local Authority licensing officers visited the premises in January 2017. A customer behind the bar verbally abused them. Maria Graham, who claimed to be managing the premises, when asked what time they were closing said ‘whenever we want’.

 

CID officers had contacted Jason Clement with regard to gaining CCTV footage regarding crimes they were investigating in relation to the premises. He was obstructive and it later transpired that the CCTV equipment had been stolen of which he was unaware.

 

The sale of the premises was never completed and the Metropolitan Police were of the opinion that they did not think that further conditions were appropriate and the business could not continue in its current state and therefore requested that the license be revoked.

 

The Sub-Committee was addressed by an officer for Public Health, RBG, who fully supported the revocation of the licence on the grounds of public safety.

 

Councillor Stephen Brain addressed the Sub-Committee and highlighted the issues outlined in his written submission.  

 

All parties, with the exception of the Legal Advisor and Committee Officer, withdrew to allow the Sub-Committee to deliberate at 6.40pm.  All parties returned at 6.43pm. 

 

In reaching its decision the Sub Committee considered the Council’s statement of Licensing Policy, the Licensing Act 2003, the Regulations made there under and the Guidance issued by the Secretary of State under S.182 of that Act. In discharging its functions the Sub Committee did so with a view to promoting the licensing objectives of the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.

 

The Sub Committee reviewed the premises licence of the

 

The Duchess Public House, 1 Woolwich Road SE10 0RA

 

and having considered all the evidence put before it the Sub Committee Resolved to-:

-        Revoke the Premises Licence;

 

The Sub Committee’s decision was based on issues raised concerning the licensing objectives of the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm.

 

In reaching a decision, the Sub-Committee considered –

 

The verbal and written representations from the Police, the Trading Standards, Environmental Health, the Director of Public Health, local Ward Councillor and local residents.

 

The Sub-Committee heard from the Police who referred to his written representations and also made oral representations stating his loss of confidence in the management of the licenced premises. The Police re-iterated his stance that the only option available was a revocation of the premises licence as modifying conditions would be ineffective for reasons that Mr Clements (the premises licence holder) had shown a lack of interest or willingness to continue in the licensing industry. The Sub-Committee placed significant weight on the representations of the Police.

 

The Sub-Committee heard that the Director of Public Health was in support of the review application.  Detailed written representations were referred to and it was emphasised that the absence of a management structure on the licenced premises was a real concern that children were able to access alcohol with no checks or challenge from staff. The Sub-Committee accepted the representations of the Director of Public Health.

 

The Sub-Committee listened to Councillor Brain who made representations on behalf of himself and local residents in support of the application for a revocation of the premises licence. He referred to his written representations and repeated his concern that children had been seen in and at the bar and also playing on the gaming machines at the licensed premises. He stated that he had heard loud music emanating from the licensed premises, witnessed the abusive behaviour to passers-by (particularly women) by patrons and that dogs tied to railings by patrons had been threatening to pedestrians. When asked by the Sub-Committee as to whether he had ever seen the licensed premises run well he stated that the licensed premises had always been badly run but that it had deteriorated since it became known as the ‘The Duchess’. The Sub-Committee were persuaded by the representations of the local Ward Councillor and gave it considerable weight.

 

The Sub-Committee placed great weight on all the representations and noted that the licensed premises holder had not attended the meeting nor offered any written objections.

 

In considering the application the Sub-Committee were mindful of paragraph 3.6 of the Licensing Policy which states that “The Royal Borough recognises that well-run premises can make a valuable, positive contribution to the local community through the local economy, tourism and cultural development. However, if they are not properly managed and controlled, licensed premises ….. can become a serious source of crime and disorder or anti-social behaviour problems” and found:

 

      That there was compelling representations and overwhelming evidence that all four licensing objectives were being undermined

 

      It was not appropriate to modify the conditions on the premises licence as it would not address the concerns raised concerning the lack of management control over the running of the licensed premises, criminal activity and anti-social behaviour

 

      That revocation of the premises licence was the only appropriate and proportionate measure to be taken in order to promote the licensing objectives of Prevention of Crime and Disorder, Public Safety, Prevention of Public Nuisance and Protection of Children from Harm.

 

No decision made by the Council would have effect during the time period within which an appeal might be brought and until such time that any appeal has been determined or abandoned.

 

The applicant for review, holder of the Premises Licence, or any other person who made relevant representations to the application may appeal against the Council’s decision to the Magistrates Court.  Such an appeal must be submitted to the Magistrates Court within 21 days of the date from when the appeal period is deemed to have started, which will be stated in the cover email/letter to the Notice of Decision.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Supporting documents: