Norwich pub's later opening plans scrapped

David BalePlans to extend the licensing hours at a city pub have been withdrawn after it was hit with two noise abatement notices because of neighbours' complaints.David Bale

Plans to extend the licensing hours at a city pub have been withdrawn after it was hit with two noise abatement notices because of neighbours' complaints.

Sarah Ladi, licensee at the Regal pub in Dereham Road, had applied to extend the hours for live music and the sale of alcohol and for additional licensable activities in the form of dancing.

But Norwich City Council issued two noise abatement notices on the pub - one on the supervisor and the other on the premises licence-holder - which means it cannot host any live music events.

Ms Ladi said there was, therefore, no point applying for the variation in the licence.

She said the application was also unlikely to get approval after the pub was branded a hotbed of crime and violence by Norfolk police, who objected to the licence extension and claimed that anti-social behaviour had surged since the start of last year with drug use and alcohol-fuelled violence.

In a letter of objection sent to the licensing authority, Norwich City Council, police blamed the rise in problems on the poor management of the premises.

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Ms Ladi said: 'I have always been very

co-operative with the police. 'According to our records, police have only been called to our premises for crime issues on 16 occasions since October 2008.

'A lot of the things that the police blame us for happened outside and away from the pub, which had nothing to do with us.'

The licensing application was due to be discussed by the city council's licensing sub-committee on March 3.

In the letter of objection, Norfolk police said it had dealt with more than 30 incidents of crime and disorder at the pub in the last year, many resulting in the ejection and/or arrest of one or more people.

Police said crimes included possession of cannabis, harassment, causing alarm or distress, theft from a fruit machine, malicious wounding and criminal damage.

Police have also had to deal with excessive noise, rowdy or violent behaviour, weapons, drunken people, drugs and assaults.

Licensing officer Richard Mayer says in the letter: 'The police believe the underlying cause of these crimes and other incidents are aligned with ineffective management practices currently employed at the premises. They also believe excessive amounts of alcohol have been a highly contributory factor.'

A council spokeswoman said: 'As a result of noise complaints received from several residential premises in the area, enforcement officers paid a visit to measure the pub's noise levels. Officers deemed the noise level to be a statutory nuisance which led to the issue of two noise abatement notices.'

� Do you plan to extend the licensing hours at your venue? Ring reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email