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Appointment of Chairman
It was proposed by Councillor G Cutting and seconded by Councillor T Page that Councillor J Jones be appointed Chairman of the Licensing Sub-Committee for the meeting. After being put to the meeting and a vote taken, the motion was declared CARRIED.
RESOLVED – that Councillor J Jones be appointed Chairman of the Licensing Sub-Committee for the meeting.
The Chairman outlined the procedure to be followed. All those present were introduced.
The Service Manager (Licensing and Enforcement) summarised the application in relation to a Review of the Premises Licence for Deco, 16-20 Parliament Square, Hertford, SG14 1EZ. He sought and was provided with assurances from those in attendance that they had had an opportunity to consider the papers, some of which, had been circulated late.
The Service Manager (Licensing and Enforcement) drew the Sub-Committee’s attention to two changes within the report at paragraph 3.3 (deletion of all the words after “within this policy” and on page 41 (Monday to Wednesday 10:00 to 01:00) which should read “10:00 pm to 02:00am”
The applicants requesting the review summarised their issues of complaint which in the main, related to increased levels of music following the refurbishment of the building in February 2018 and noise nuisance from the courtyard smoking area and customers leaving the premises. One applicant complained of the verbal abuse she had received when she had raised matters with Deco management. In addition to the loud music, another applicant referred to rowdy behaviour from those queuing to get into the club, and unsupervised dispersion when the premises closed.
A Police Officer (Licensing) provided a summary of concerns regarding the operation of Deco. With the consent of all parties she showed evidence from a Police Officer’s bodycam of an incident which had occurred on 2 April 2018. The Police Officer (Licensing) stated that the footage demonstrated the need for the conditions requested by them, as a Responsible Authority.
Safe occupancy levels were discussed and it was noted that there were conflicting numbers which had been provided by Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue to Deco which needed clarification.
Councillor G Cutting sought clarification on the proposed ID scanning condition and was concerned that it did not require all attendees ID to be scanned, only the majority. The licence holder explained that it was not appropriate to scan those attending private events. Councillor T Page referred to the issue of SIAs and the numbers deployed on entrance and exits. This was explained.
The Senior Environmental Health Officer referred to the draft conditions which were being sought to address a number of issues. She explained that residents had not complained previously but that since February 2018, amplified music had become a problem.
The Solicitor for the licence holder explained that, in the main, the issue was about amplified music. She reminded the Sub-Committee that music was deregulated up to 11pm.
The licence holder provided the historical context on the operation of the business which had changed from a cocktail bar to a bar/club in order to maintain its viability. It was noted that music was being played on all three levels, but concerns were expressed that this was not background music. The licence holder explained that a refurbishment and a new sound system had been installed in January 2018 which had caused residents to complain. He assured the Sub Committee that the club did ... view the full minutes text for item 6.