Brighton café given drinks licence despite neighbour’s objections

A café at Fiveways can serve beer and wine to its customers after the owners were granted a drinks licence by Brighton and Hove City Council.

Engin Kocer and Joanne Mitchell, owners of the Piano Café, in Ditchling Road, Brighton, can serve alcohol to seated customers having a meal from 4pm to 10pm Monday to Saturday.

One neighbour, Oliver Ferns, objected to the application and complained about planning issues, cooking smells and noise.

But at a council licensing panel hearing on Monday 16 November, he was told that none of the issues were relevant to licensing decisions.

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The panel said: “The applicants appear well informed about the licensing regime and objectives.

“The panel does not consider that granting this licence will undermine the licensing objectives.

“We have taken into consideration the concerns expressed by the resident, many of which are not relevant to the granting of this licence.

“If there are issues with odour, these can potentially be taken up with the environmental protection team.”

Earlier this year, planning law changed to allow a shop to be turned into a café unless the council had passed additional restrictions known as article 4 directions.

As a result, the couple no longer need to apply for planning permission for a change of use.

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