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The Committee met to consider an application which had been made under section 17 of the Licensing Act 2003 for a premises licence in relation to the above premises.
The hearing was held in accordance with the provisions of section 18 Licensing Act 2003 and the Licensing Act (Hearings) Regulations 2005.
The Chairman introduced the members of the Committee and the Council’s officers who were present.
The Council’s legal adviser, John Tully, summarised the procedure to be followed.
Mr. Tully referred to the additional documents which had been circulated: in particular a schedule of events which had been submitted by the applicant and two special conditions. The special conditions were designed to ensure that the activities authorised by existing club premises certificate could not continue to be allowed at the same time as the activities authorised by the premises licence should it be granted.
At the hearing, the Committee were addressed by the applicant’s representative, Guy Morris Consultant Jolliffes Solicitors who was accompanied by Stephanie King Trainee Solicitor Jolliffes Solicitors, Malcolm Floyd Chairman Runcorn Masonic Hall and Graham Clayton. Two members of the public were also present.
None of the objectors attended the hearing however the information supplied in the letters of objection were taken into consideration by the members.
Mr. Morris presented the case on behalf of the applicant. He confirmed that the applicant had agreed conditions as set out in the agenda and had amended the Operating Schedule to take into account a number of the concerns raised by objectors. He argued that the schedule of events demonstrated the majority of activities were related to Lodge Meetings and the rest were community related. Mr. Morris objected to the imposition of the special conditions and raised 6 points in favour of his argument. However, the applicant confirmed they intended to surrender the club premises certificate in any event.
The Committee asked a number of questions of the applicant’s representative and Mr. Floyd and Mr. Clayton.
The applicant responded to questions on the type of activities being undertaken, why their club premises certificate was insufficient to carry out their activities, the control measures in place for keeping order and whether the applicant proposed an ‘open door’ policy in future or restrict entry to pre-booked functions.
In the course of questioning on the subject of the hours being requested on Sundays the applicant volunteered a reduction in hours to those set out in the application. Specifically: