Sunday, October 22, 2006

Consultation on new town centre licensing policy

The Council has just begun a consultation exercise on its new Cumulative Impact Policy. This is a proposal put forward by the police to control the increase in licensed premises in the Town Centre.

In laymans terms this would introduce a prohibition on any new liquor licenses being granted within a defined area of the town centre, unless there are unique circumstances.

This is a map of the area of the town centre proposed. Essentially it runs from the eastern inner ring road across to the top of Poole Hill beyond the Triangle.

This is a map of the area proposed:

I clearly have a prejudicial interest in commenting on this document because I am the owner of three licensed premises in the town, two of which are within the boundary of the new area. I'm therefore afraid I can't offer an opinion on its introduction.

If you would like to comment you can do so here.

1 comment:

Nigel Dermott - PBC Consultancy said...

I am not so sure that this message is current. If it was then Cumulative impact policies are being undermined up and down the country. In principle they are a good idea but just because the authorities are at 'tipping point' shouldn't preclude another one coming into town. After all, it may be that the new one just might show the rest ho it should be done. The new Act prohibits blanket policies and therefore even with a CI policy each application must be viewed on its own merit. There is a case supporting longer hours as the transport infratsructure starts up again the following morning usually around 5am and therefore this would help with town centre dispersal. Unlike finishing at 2 - 3am when the buses and trains have finished and customers are left to fend for themselves as taxi's are also usually in short supply. Having a CI policy can also lead to displacement to the next nearest area that will allow an increase in trade but doesn't have the supporting infrastructure such as CCTV, doorstaff, policing etc. etc. The CI policy must be established upon sound data and this is an area that lets the authorities down. The alcohol crime such as drunk and disorderly & drink driving is easy to claim as being caused by alcohol and from a given area. Not so with other crime. Although a GBH at 2am in the town centre is likely to be alcohol fuelled, can this be proven? when the figures are pulled apart they don't usually stack up very well. One must take into account the environmental damage also such as urination, litter and noise. I am much more in favour of encouraging and fostering more responsible management. Having a policy such as this just gets peoples backs up and isn't very helpful. We need more pubwatches, better partnership working, boundaried enforcement, accreditation and training for the industry to show what it is really worth. Unfortunately I am tied in to national work around this issue but soon to go self employed offering a one stop shop to the trade for these problems. Contact me to find out more. As a specialist trainer, drug and alcohol therapist and crime scientist my CV is quite impressive. I don't come cheap but you get what you pay for and you business will be far more valuable to you. Kind Regards!