Hove seafront venue granted drinks licence

A pop-up venue on Hove seafront will be able to sell alcohol once the latest coronavirus lockdown has ended.

Rockwater was granted a temporary licence last summer for its Shacks by the Shore – designed to look like beach huts – while the one-time West End Café was refurbished.

But the temporary licence expired last month and Rockwater owner Luke Davis applied for a permanent licence although he said that he would keep the “shacks” shut during the current lockdown.

The permanent licence – until 10pm – was granted by Brighton and Hove City Council after a licensing panel hearing earlier this month.

People living in nearby Walsingham Road objected to the application for a licence for the venue on the promenade, in Kingsway.

They were concerned about crowds on the prom and increased noise and disturbance from people leaving the site.

Mr Davis also offered to employ security staff from 10pm to 7am when the venue reopens to help disperse any crowds and patrol the area. Only two of the shacks will sell alcohol.

Labour councillor Carmen Appich, who represents Westbourne ward, which includes the venue, spoke in support of Rockwater and said that the shacks selling coffee had the longest lines.

The licensing panel said: “The panel considers that, with all the measures and conditions in place for the licence as a whole, the grant of this limited variation is not likely to lead to an increase in public nuisance.

“We would encourage the applicants to keep an open and constructive dialogue with residents in the area to ensure that any issues that may arise can be swiftly addressed.”

The main Rockwater building has since received planning permission for a glazed roof terrace.

The venue was previously known as Venue, the View and Babylon Lounge as well as the West End Café.

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