Police and council oppose late opening at trouble-free Brighton takeaway

Police said that they had never had any problems linked to a takeaway in Brighton even though they had opposed an application by the owner for a late licence.

Officers had never been called to Grill 66 in Queen’s Road, even when it operated under a temporary late-night licence.

The owner Fadi Bedewi wants to open until midnight every day but currently has to close his business at 11pm.

A late-night refreshment licence would permit him to sell food and drink after 11pm and until as late as 5am although Mr Bedewi only wants to keep Grill 66 open until midnight.

Council repairs

He has not applied to sell alcoholic drink.

Two years ago Mr Bedewi applied to stay open until 2.30am on Friday and Saturday nights but his application was refused.

Today (Tuesday 18 June) he made his case to a Brighton and Hove City Council licensing panel at Hove Town Hall.

The panel, chaired by Conservative councillor Lee Wares, sitting with Green councillor Martin Osborne and Labour’s Carmen Appich, heard that 11pm until midnight was the busiest time in the area.

Mr Bedewi felt frustrated at having to close his doors to business which was going to neighbouring takeaways with late licences allowing them to stay open until between midnight and 1.30am in the week and until 3.30am at weeknds.

Sussex Police and the council licensing team opposed Mr Bedewi’s application because the takeaway is in an area designated as a cumulative impact zone where limits are placed on new late-night businesses.

Police licensing officer Mark Thoroghgood said that encouraging the public to leave the area was key to controlling anti-social behaviour and crime.

He said that granting a late-night refreshment licence would only encourage drunk people to stay in the area longer, causing a public nuisance and potentially leading to crime and disorder.

In the past two months Sussex Police had received 30 callouts to Queen’s Road from the early evening to late at night for offences that included minor drunkenness to assault and drug dealing.

Mr Thoroghgood said: “The applicant makes note they have operated with later hours under a number of TENs (temporary event notices).

“However, we should point out these were during notable events when we would have extra resources on such as Pride, the football and Halloween.”

He said that the force would like to see TENs used rather than late opening seven days a week.

Mr Bedewi’s solicitor Nicholas Perkins said that the new application would see Grill 66 close earlier than three other takeaways in the parade near Brighton station and hours before the two pubs shut.

Mr Perkins said that opening an extra hour would relieve pressure on the other takeaways in the area and help disperse people more quickly.

He said: “The other premises from 11 o’clock onwards suffer from considerable queuing. As a result they have people milling around outside staying in the area.

“The point is people want to be served after coming from the pubs and clubs in West Street and they want to move on.

“An extra premises will ease that pressure, allow people to move on and avoid the flashpoints.”

If granted a late licence, Grill 66 would have security cameras, late-night door staff and litter picking outside.

The panel retired to make its decision which should be made public within five working days.

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