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City pub's licence set to be reviewed

PUBLISHED: 18:00 24 May 2010 | UPDATED: 16:46 01 July 2010

The Catherine Wheel pub

The Catherine Wheel pub

David Bale

A gay-friendly city pub could lose its licence to play music and serve drinks into the early hours of the morning after a neighbour called for a review on the grounds of public nuisance.

A gay-friendly city pub could lose its licence to play music and serve drinks into the early hours of the morning after a neighbour called for a review on the grounds of public nuisance.

Environmental health officers have visited the Catherine Wheel in St Augustine's Street to monitor noise levels, and neighbour Lee Allen has called for the pub's licence to be reviewed by Norwich City Council's licensing subcommittee next week. The subcommittee has the power to revoke the licence or suspend it for three months.

Mr Allen said: “For the last two years we have had loud music, and people drunk, shouting and swearing, and running up and down St Augustine's until 4am every weekend.

“We have had two neighbours move from the area in the last 12 months.

“Environmental health has called numerous times and warned the pub to turn the volume down six or seven times.”

His complaint was backed by neighbours Simon Brock and Joanna Smith, from St Martins at Oak Wall Lane, who said they had considered moving because of the noise problems.

And a letter was also sent by Joanna O'Donoghue, from Stonemason's Court, who said the pub was “excessively noisy at weekends”.

She said: “I am kept awake until the early hours. There is occasionally shouting, fighting and rows outside my window, which can be disconcerting when my granddaughter is staying over.”

Meanwhile, Tony Shearman, the city council's environmental protection officer, confirmed that since August 2007 there had been a number of complaints from noise associated with the premises.

“These have all related to either noise from the customers outside or loud music from the venue,” he said.

However, Rodney Cooke, of Wensum Property Management Ltd in St Augustine's Street, said there had been less damage and vandalism in the area after dark since the present management moved in.

And Catherine Wheel licensee Bernice Perkins, who lives above the pub with two flatmates, said: “It's very unusual for more than a handful of people to be outside at any one time.

“We try to monitor people talking outside and ask them to be quiet and there are notices inside the door asking them to be quiet and respect the neighbours.

“There is no singing or karaoke outside and obviously no drinking. Environmental health came out to monitor the noise and we were asked to turn the volume down and we did. We don't want to cause unnecessary stress to residents and we would not blatantly disregard reasonable requests.”

The application to review the licence will be discussed at City Hall at 3.15pm on Friday, May 28.

Are you fighting a licensing application? Ring reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email david.bale2@archant.co.uk.

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