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2am bar opening is given go-ahead
1:10pm Friday 1st February 2013 in News
A WORCESTER bar has won permission to open until 2am despite fears over drunks, anti-social behaviour and cigarette butts.
The Courtyard in St Nicholas Street can now trade until 2am every day apart from Tuesdays and Wednesdays after three hours of debate yesterday.
The popular pub is situated next to 62 flats, many of them used by pensioners, leading to a series of objections to Worcester City Council.
Pub bosses originally wanted to open until 2am seven days a week, but agreed to knock it down to five before it was considered by the council’s licensing sub-committee yesterday.
Councillor Lynn Denham, one of the objectors, told the committee people were living in constant fear of drunks congregating next to their apartments.
A total of 42 flats are only accessible at night by a gate situated directly next to The Courtyard’s main entrance.
Coun Denham said: “An awful lot of residents are neighbours to the pub, and concerns over noise and anti-social behaviour were made to me long be- fore this application was submitted.
“When you’re trying to come home at night and there is a load of drunks outside what is effectively your front door, who give you a load of abuse when you ask them to move, it’s not easy to then go through swathes of young people and complain to the manager.
“Would you like your next door neighbours to be partying at that time in the morning?”
During the debate Michelle Hazlewood, on behalf of licence holders Marston’s, said the pub had a good reputation with police and no track record of complaints.
“Police do not see it as a concern, and environmental health have no objections either,” she said. “We are hearing lots of genuine concern and fear of change, but that is not substantiated by evidence of complaints.”
Six complaints were made about the bid, with some letters saying life “would be unbearable” if it went ahead and that they were “blighted” by noise.
As part of the conditions laid down by the committee, staff are barred from placing glass bottles into the large bins outside between the hours of 10pm and 8am.
The external speakers must also be turned off at midnight, and trading hours on Tuesdays and Wednesdays limited to midnight, as at present.
During the debate Coun Roger Knight, the cabinet member for cleaner and greener, said St Nicholas Street is often littered with butt ends, although he added the pub was “not the worst offender in the city”.
Vag Monoyos, the manager, said staff would do more regular litter patrols.