Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, The Burys, Godalming
Contact: Maureen Brown Democratic Services Officer
Election of Chairman
To elect a Chairman for this meeting of Sub-Committee A.
Cllr Simon Inchbald was appointed Chairman for this meeting of Licensing Sub-Committee A.
To confirm the Minutes of the Meeting held on 30 March 2015 (to be laid on the table half an hour before the meeting).
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 30 March 2015 were confirmed and signed.
Disclosure of Interests
To receive from Members declarations of personal and prejudicial interests in relation to any items included on the agenda for this meeting, in accordance with the Waverley Code of Local Government Conduct.
There were no interests declared under this heading.
PART I - RECOMMENDATIONS TO THE COMMITTEE
There were no matters falling within this category.
PART II - MATTERS OF REPORT
The background papers relating to the following report items in Part II are as specified in the agenda for the Committee.
The purpose of this report is to enable the Sub-Committee to consider an application for a variation to the Premises Licence of The Lounge Bar & Grill, 1 High Street, Godalming, Surrey GU7 1AZ, from Mr David Vanderhook, the current Director of Lounge Bar and Grill Ltd which is the company that is the registered Premises Licence Holder. The application has received 2 representations, one of which is from a Responsible Authority.
The Sub-Committee is requested to consider the application for the variation of the premises licence on its merits.
Section 35(3) Licensing Act 2003 provides that the Sub-Committee, having regard to the relevant representations made, must take such of the following steps (if any) as it considers appropriate for the promotion of the licensing objectives:
· To modify the conditions of the premises licence, whether by alteration or omission of conditions or the addition of new conditions. Any conditions must be appropriate for the promotion of the licensing objectives, proportionate and should address the matters raised in the representations
· To reject the application in whole or part.
The applicant accompanied by the manager and DPS of the premises attended the meeting and confirmed that they had received a copy of the agenda papers.
The Democratic Services Manager introduced the report and explained that the applicant sought to vary the area/plans covered for licensable activities, change the capacity limit and amend the conditions regarding:
· Smoking outside
· Last entry/re-entry
· Children in the bar
The licensable activities and times and days that licensable activity were permitted remained the same.
The Manager of The Lounge explained that they sought to increase the number of people allowed outside smoking at any one time to 15 from 23.00 on a Friday and Saturday, and for the allocated smoking area to be the side of the building. This would move people away from the front of the building and help reduce noise nuisance to local residents. He suggested that the noise was not only created by customers to The Lounge, but from other nearby premises, one of which had live music. Opposite The Lounge was also a lay-by and bus shelter where people congregated to wait for taxis.
The Environmental Health Officers then gave their reasons for objecting to the variation. Principally their objections were on the grounds of noise nuisance which both the relocation of the smoking area and the extension of entry time would increase. The Environmental Health Officer listed 13 instances since September 2011 where complaints had been received over noise from the premises.
Environmental Health also stated that the current capacity limit of 100 was an embedded condition based on evacuation need and fire doors and were uncertain whether an increase in numbers would required a safety assessment. Environmental Health no longer had responsibility for fire safety issues and suggested a new risk assessment be undertaken by the relevant authority.
Godalming Town Council then outlined their objection which was the side of the building being used as a smoking area. Godalming Town Council were the owners of the access area that lead to a public car park. The applicant had not contacted them to ask for permission and Godalming Town Council would not consent for its use as a smoking area. The Chairman therefore said that this was not a matter for the Sub-Committee and the applicant should take it up with the Town Council as the landowner.
The Sub-Committee then asked a number of questions of the Manager of The Lounge. The Manager did not accept that the numbers of smokers allowed outside the premises had exceeded the limit of five, as people waiting to get into the premises often smoked as they waited and therefore this was a difficult area to police.
The Manager advised that the reason for requesting an extension to the last entry or re-entry time was to allow industry workers access after they had finished work in the town. The Sub-Committee were concerned that this would be difficult to monitor and a type of informal arrangement would not be allowed under the licence provisions. ... view the full minutes text for item 7.