Council Clamps Down on Local Venues' Hours

Committee responds to calls from police and residents

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Two local venues have had their hours restricted by the council's licensing sub-committee following complaints from residents.

The former Crescent Club in North End Road, which has now reopened under the name Roots and Kultured, claiming to showcase art, poetry and sculpture, has had its opening hours to 11pm on Monday to Thursday, midnight on Friday and Saturday, and to 10.30pm on Sunday on the recommendation of the police.

The Crescent Club was the scene of several stabbings - one fatal - and Sgt Peter Stewart-Maunder from the police's Avonmore and Brook Green Safer Neighbourhood Team called for its licenced to be reviewed.

H&F Council's licensing sub-committee agreed and as well as slashing its hours, a condition allowing the club to have occasional extensions to its licence will be removed and the management team will have to join the Pubwatch scheme, update the CCTV system and stop using external promoters to hold nights at the club.

Last June Ali Toprak, 32, was stabbed to death outside The Crescent Club's entrance, following a Turkish-themed evening there. And in January a 24-year-old man was stabbed in a mass brawl that spilled out on to the street.

Former Brentford FC player DJ Campbell, 28, was arrested last month in connection to that stabbing and Campbell, who is now on loan to Championship side Blackpool from Leicester City, has been released on bail pending further inquiries.

Local residents supported the police review, with 97 people making representations on the grounds of crime and disorder and public nuisance.

On Fulham Broadway meanwhile, well known nightspot Fiesta Havana has been refused an extension to its licence. The council's licensing sub-committee voted unanimously to turn down and application form the bar for longer opening hours.

Fiesta Havana had applied to stay open for an extra half an hour each night until 2.30am, and to sell alcohol until 1.45am rather than its current 1am cut-off. They also wanted to remove a condition that no football shirts could be worn in the bar.

But 12 local residents made objections to the proposals, claiming that a later licence would lead to disturbance and antisocial behaviour in the area.

It was the first time the sub-committee have considered an application in the Fulham Broadway area since the cumulative impact policy and saturation zone came into effect in January. The saturation zone covers the Fulham town centre area, which is flooded with pubs and clubs.

The policy makes the presumption that new licenses or extensions to licences would be refused, unless the applicant can demonstrate that there will be no negative impact on the area.

May 7, 2010