Minutes of a meeting held on 30th June, 2014.
Present: Councillors P.J. Clarke, Mrs. P. Drake and A.G. Powell.
Also present: Licensing Team Leader, Environmental Health Officer and South Wales Police.
(a) Appointment of Chairman -
Councillor A.G. Powell was elected Chairman for the duration of the hearing.
(b) Declarations of Interest -
No declarations were received.
(c) Licensing Act 2003 – Application for a Premises Licence – Llantwit Major Rugby Club Field, Boverton Road, Llantwit Major, CF61 1XZ –
The papers for consideration at the meeting contained a copy of the procedure to be followed at Licensing Sub-Committee hearings and those present were advised of this.
Also present: Mr. Matthew Mazzitelli and Mr. James Bagnall (Applicants); and Mrs. S. Jones (Events Officer for the Vale of Glamorgan Council - Witness for the Applicant).
The Chairman welcomed those present to the meeting and referred to the Licensing Team Leader to outline the application to the Sub-Committee hearing. They informed the hearing that on 6th May 2014 an application had been submitted by Mr. Bagnall and Mr. Mazzitelli for a Premise Licence under the Licensing Act 2003, for Llantwit Major Rugby Club Field.
The application requested permission for Regulated Entertainment in the form of live music, recorded music and the performance of dance between the hours of 14:00 to 22:00 on one Saturday in July per year. A copy of the application was attached to the report at Appendix A. Representations had been received from South Wales Police and were attached to the report at Appendix C. The Environmental Health Department had also submitted representations which were attached to the report at Appendix B. Subsequent to the agenda for the hearing being issued, the Environmental Health Department submitted further representations which were disseminated to all parties and made public prior to the date of the Licensing Sub-Committee Hearing.
The Chairman confirmed that no other Interested Parties had made representations within the consultation period and requested that all parties introduce themselves prior to speaking. The Applicants were given the opportunity to present their case and the Applicants introduced Sarah Jones, the Events Officer for the Vale of Glamorgan Council. Mrs. Jones informed the hearing that she had worked with the Applicants for a few months and that the Applicants had held a successful event in the previous year at Fonmon Castle and they subsequently wanted to organise an annual event. She stated that Llantwit Major Rugby Field was the perfect site as it had been used as an event site previously and that the premise licence would be for up to 1,000 people for live music, with no sale of alcohol requested on the licence and informed the hearing that there had been no objections from local residents.
Mrs. Jones informed the hearing that on 3rd June 2014 she had attended a Safety Advisory Group meeting at which the Applicant had presented an event management plan which and that South Wales Police and the Environmental Health Department were also present at the meeting. Following the meeting of the Safety Advisory Group approximately 50 objections had been received from South Wales Police and the Environmental Health Department which included conditions such as metal detection equipment which had not been asked for previously and would, in her opinion, make the event unworkable and therefore felt it best to come to Licensing Sub-Committee to discuss the matter.
The Chairman asked the Applicants whether they had anything to add at this point and the Applicants confirmed that they had no further representations at this stage. The Chairman afforded the Responsible Authorities and Sub-Committee Members the opportunity to ask questions in relation to the Applicant’s representations. The Responsible Authorities had no questions.
There being no further questions on the Applicant’s representations, the Chairman provided the Responsible Authorities with an opportunity to present their representations. In presenting their case the representative from the South Wales Police stated that the application did not go into any detail with regard to the type of event or entertainment and that the Premises Licence could be for an event with up to 4,999 attendees. The Application was for over 18’s and would require SIA security and possibly a Police presence and would need to be fenced off. South Wales Police wanted to ensure that the four licensing objectives were not only met but also promoted and their representations were prompted by the lack of detail contained within the application as to how the four licensing objectives would be promoted.
They stated that if a Police presence was required at the event, they would need sufficient notice, therefore they had requested at least 56 days’ notice of any event to be given to the Event Safety Advisory Group; and stated that the Application was not specific with regards to the need for Police presence. South Wales Police advised how the conditions within their representations would promote the four licensing objectives. They informed the hearing that they were happy for the metal detection equipment to be hand held rather than a search arch. The Police Officer further informed the hearing that they would accept an amendment to the condition on searches to stipulate that searches would be random rather than for all persons entering the premise and that several of the conditions requested were in line with best practice.
The Chairman provided the Applicants with an opportunity to ask questions with regard to the Police representations and the Applicants passed over to Mrs. Jones, who stated that a large number of objections had been received from South Wales Police after the meeting of the Safety Advisory Group but was unsure what had been agreed with regard to the premise licence application outside of that meeting. Mr. Mazzitelli queried whether the searches would be required for all persons entering the premises and South Wales Police stated that searches could be carried out on a random basis for drugs, alcohol and offensive weapons from the time the premises opens to the public. Mrs. Jones queried the number of SIA supervisors proposed as a condition of the licence and South Wales Police informed the hearing that the Security Industry Authority (SIA) website did not state a prescribed number therefore they had stated a minimum of four SIA licenced supervisors up to the first 100 patrons and then a ratio of 1 to 80 patrons thereafter. The Applicants queried the number of stewards in the conditions as he felt that a minimum of 10 on top of the SIA door supervisors was too high. South Wales Police advised that they would be accept 5 stewards rather than 10. The number of patrons required to be searched with metal detection equipment was also queried and it was confirmed that these could be on a selective basis, rather than all patrons.
There being no further questions from the Applicants, the Chairman asked whether the Environmental Health Officer had any questions on these representations and they asked what end time the Police would find acceptable and South Wales Police confirmed that they accepted the requested event finish time of 22:00 hours. The Chairman asked the Licensing Team Leader if they had any questions for the South Wales Police with regards to their representations and they stated that any conditions on a licence should be appropriate, clear, understandable and enforceable and that clarification was required with regard to the wording of the conditions in order to ensure that these conditions could be enforced and achieved.
The Licensing Team Leader further informed the hearing that the Event Safety Advisory Group was not a statutory function and therefore the condition requesting 56 days’ notice to be given to this group was not appropriate. They further stated that the application was too specific and the events could change on a yearly basis. In response to this South Wales Police stated that this licence could be used for events with up to 4,999 people and the condition regarding the Event Safety Advisory Group provided the opportunity to know what event they would be putting on in order to ensure that measures could be put in place to ensure public safety. The Police Officer stated that this condition could be changed to state 56 days’ notice to South Wales Police. The Chairman stated that 56 days would give sufficient time to look at the application in order for the relevant authorities to put in place the necessary infrastructure to ensure public safety and further informed the hearing that he felt that the Event Safety Advisory Group performed an important function. The Licensing Team Leader queried several of the conditions put forward by South Wales Police and in response the representative from South Wales Police stated that they were not trying to be obstructive to event organisers, but were trying to put building blocks in place to facilitate different events and that if they required something different on the licence they could apply for a variation for licence prior to the event. The Chairman asked whether this meant that the Applicants would have to go through the same process again and was informed that this would not be the case. The Licensing Team Leader stated that if the Applicants needed to make any changes they would have to make an application for a minor variation and a Licensing Sub-Committee would have to be convened, South Wales Police stated that this would depend on the event. The Licensing Team Leader appreciated the Police Officer’s points but stated that if a condition was attached to a licence unnecessarily and it was not upheld the licence holder would automatically be in breach of the licence and advised that each event should be considered on its own merits and stated that 56 days’ notice to the Licensing Authority and South Wales Police might be the best way to go about achieving this.
South Wales Police stated that the application was for a premises licence and as such, they would not know what event would be held from year to year and therefore if certain conditions were not added to the licence they would not have the authority to enforce any areas that had not been added to the premises licence as a condition.
Further discussions took place with regard to the number of SIA door supervisors advised by the South Wales Police which involved the police officer stating that the premise licence applied for was for patrons 18 years and over and ticketed, therefore the numbers and ratio stated within the condition would provide for sufficient event security and flexibility for the security staff. In using ratio, as the numbers of patrons increased, so would the number of security supervisors required. The Chairman stated that the sub-committee would benefit from some research with regard to the figures within their conditions, and the Police Officer stated that they thought the number of SIA supervisors required had been agreed on and that the condition was proposed in order to ensure public safety and to prevent crime and disorder. The Chairman stated that they were considering a premise license application, not and event licence application and, if it was for an event licence the condition could be appropriate; however, in this case it may not be and thought that the Event Safety Advisory Group and operating schedules were where these issues should be resolved. The Police Officer stated that the Event Safety Advisory Group was not a licensing forum and therefore neither licensing issues nor operating schedules would be discussed.
There was discussion pertaining to the operating schedule put forward by the Applicants with South Wales Police stating that it was very vague and ambiguous with specific reference made to police presence being listed as a requirement at every event and stated that they were unsure how it would work in reality if 56 days’ notice was required of every event. They further stated that safeguards would have to be built into the premises licence in order to promote the four licensing objectives.
The Chairman asked whether the Safety Advisory Group would have seen the operating schedule and was informed by South Wales Police that they would not have it as it was an events panel not a licensing forum. In response Mrs. Jones stated that the Applicants had sent out a detailed event plan and premises licence application to the Event Safety Advisory Group in June 2014 which had detailed names of the security services and first aid suppliers.
The Chairman queried whether the South Wales Police would have requested the same level of security for different types of events, for example a family event, and was informed that they would as this was a premises licence for over 18s events. In response Mr. Bagnall stated that they had a lack of experience in filling out the forms and that next year they might want to put on a family event. It was confirmed that an event management plan had been put forward to the Event Safety Advisory Group not an operating schedule. The Legal Officer stated that it was not necessary to see the event management plan as they would be conditioning this licence not the plan.
In reference to a question from a Member of the Licensing Sub-Committee, Mr. Mazzitelli stated that he would be happy with the numbers of SIA door supervisors stated within the South Wales Police representations but confirmed the request for a reduction in the number of stewards from 10 to 5.
After further discussion it was confirmed by South Wales Police that they would require the event site rather than the whole field to be secured with Harris fencing which would be needed as it was a ticket only event for over 18s and therefore the area would be a need to be controlled. The Chairman queried whether as this was contained within the Applicant’s operating schedule whether this needed to be conditioned on the licence as was informed that the Sub-Committee could amend the operating schedule to include appropriate wording.
The Licensing Team Leader stated that the Licensing Authority would require evidence as to why metal detecting equipment, hand held or otherwise, was required for the licence as they had not come across an event where this had been a requirement previously. The South Wales Police queried whether these events were over 18 and ticketed events and Mrs. Jones stated that previous private events had involved the sale of alcohol but they were not solely for over 18s or ticketed events and South Wales Police stated that for over 18s and ticketed events they needed to ensure and promote the licensing objectives and confirmed that at the Glastonbarry event hand held metal detecting devices would be used. Mrs. Jones stated that the Waterfront Event had taken place on a premises licence and included the use of SIA door supervisors but not the use of metal detectors and that Glastonbarry was on a TEN and Applicants for that event had added this condition to their application.
The Chairman asked about the possibility of removing the 18+ age limit on the premises licence application. South Wales Police stated that they were unable to comment on this at short notice. A Member of the Licensing Sub-Committee stated that the condition regarding metal detecting equipment should have stated random searches rather than all patrons.
An earlier start for the premises licence was discussed, however, it was confirmed that activities starting prior to the requested time of 14:00 could not be conditioned. The Applicants confirmed that they would be using a specific security company with the use of trained stewards for all events on this premises licence. The Events Officer stated that this security company was known to the police and that there would be a stewards briefing prior to the event.
The Licensing Team Leader informed the hearing that as the event held could change from year to year this would need to be considered when conditioning the premises licence. In addition, discussion was also held with regards to the other proposed conditions from South Wales Police and The Licensing Team Leader advised the Sub-Committee that if parent legislation existed some of the proposed conditions would not be appropriate. Further to this, the Licensing Team Leader stated that if the 18+ age limit was removed the Challenge 21 condition would need to be reconsidered.
The Chairman asked whether the Applicants had any further questions for the Licensing Officer and on behalf of the Applicants, Mrs. Jones asked whether the 18+ age limit on the application could be amended dependant on the event, for example, a family fun day. The Licensing Team Leader stated that the Sub-Committee could change this but the Applicant could not. Mr. Bagnall stated that when they applied for the premises licence it was with this event in mind therefore they had requested it to be for 18 years and over and furthermore they thought they would have to go through the application process again for each event but would like to put on a family fun day next year.
There was discussion with regards to the Applicants’ operating schedule within their application and the statement that Police would be in attendance at all events with South Wales Police stating that they did not know what attempts had been made by the Applicants to approach South Wales Police in relation to police presence at their events. The Environmental Health Officer stated that Police are paid for certain events for example, the Vale of Glamorgan Show, however the Police make no commitment to attend all events; a Police presence would also depend on available resources. South Wales Police confirmed that if Police presence was required and paid for they would be able to attend. However, with regard to this event, Police would be visible subject to demand. The Chairman stated that if Police presence was listed on the operating schedule and Police did not attend an event, then the licence holder would automatically be in breach of the conditions. South Wales Police stated that this should not be listed on an operating schedule.
The Chairman provided the opportunity for the Environmental Health Officer to present the representations for their department. In presenting their representations the Environmental Health Officer stated that they would be presenting their second set of representations which was circulated to all parties in advance of the meeting, was dated the 12th June 2014 and contained a significantly reduced number of conditions. The Environmental Health Officer advised revised timings of 14:00 to 21:00 which was a reduction of one hour from that requested by the Applicant. The Environmental Health Officer went through the various proposed conditions which pertained to the use of the premises licence, safe conditions of premises, electrical installations and noise and vibration. The Environmental Health Department stipulated that at least 56 days’ notice to Responsible Authorities would be required for each event, with each event requiring an event plan. The Officer confirmed that the Applicants had agreed to have an electrician on site for the duration of the event. The conditions listed with regards to noise and vibrations centred around the fact that the site was located within a residential area with some houses within 85m of the stage site. It was suggested that if the organisers were unable to clear the site before 23:00 they would lock up the site and finish clearing it in the morning. The Officers stated that the condition with regards to the orientation of the amplification equipment had been agreed with the Applicant and that noise levels would be set at 65dB(a). The Environmental Health Officer stated that they had had a brief discussion with the Applicants that morning and would recommend that if the premises licence was granted to 22:00 it may be prudent to extend the clearance of the site to 23:30.
The Chairman asked whether there were any questions for the Environmental Health Officer and the Applicants queried the condition regarding the clearance of the site and stated that the site was on a main road in Llantwit Major with the Environmental Health Officer responding that noise levels in the area drop off significantly after 23:00 and they would not like to see a lot of movement on the site after 23:00. The Applicant stated that some of the pubs in Llantwit Major were open until 01:00 on Saturday nights and that although they would endeavour to clear the site as quickly as possible; it would be difficult to do this by 23:30 and informed the hearing that it could take 2 to 3 hours to pack up after the event.
Mrs Jones queried whether all Responsible Authorities would be required to have prior notification of any event and whether South Wales Police and the Licensing Authority could be notified instead of all eight Responsible Authorities. The Licensing Team Leader stated that it would be onerous to inform all of the Responsible Authorities and that the Licensing Authority would inform all relevant Responsible Authorities by way of the Event Panel or Event Safety Advisory Group. The Environmental Health Officer stated that they would not be happy with being kept out of the loop, and that if the licence was not conditioned, the whole process was valueless.
There were concerns expressed by the Applicant with regards to the maximum 65 dB(a) noise level suggested by the Environmental Health Department and the Environmental Health Officer confirmed that this was not an arbitrary figure and confirmed that the Code of Practice for Environmental Noise guidance (1995) had been used in setting this level and the noise limit would be tested at the boundary of the nearest residential property. There were no questions from the South Wales Police with regard to the Environmental Health representations.
The Licensing Team Leader expressed concern with regards to some of the conditions put forward as there could be parent legislation that would negate the need for some of the proposed conditions. The Applicant confirmed that their staging and equipment would be set up and sourced from a professional company who would already have sound checking equipment. The Environmental Health Officer advised that a lot of companies now use mobile phone applications which could be calibrated with their department’s sound check equipment in order to prevent the expense of prohibitively expensive sound checking equipment.
There being no further questions from any parties with regard to the representations from the Environmental Health Department the Chairman provided the Responsible Authorities with the opportunity to sum up with regard to their representations.
South Wales Police had no further points to make in reference to the application. The Environmental Health Officer stated that they felt their second submission was proportionate and reasonable and only contained 10 proposed conditions for the Premises Licence. The Licensing Team Leader stated that the Licensing Sub-Committee Members should use the guidelines within their Licensing Sub-Committee packs and that all conditions on a licence should be appropriate.
In summing up the Applicant stated that they wished to remove the age limit of 18+ from their application as they would like to put on a family event next year.
There being no further questions from any parties or Licensing Sub-Committee Members, the Sub-Committee retired to deliberate the Application in private.
Prior to giving the decision of the Sub-Committee the Chairman stated that they were aware of the importance of co-operation and working together in the Vale of Glamorgan to arrange events to the benefit of its residents.
Following consideration of the Application and representations by South Wales Police, the Environmental Health Department and having considered the DCMS Guidance, the objectives of the Licensing Act 2003 and the Council’s Statement of Licensing Policy, the Sub-Committee
RESOLVED – T H A T the Application as applied for be granted, save for the following alterations / variations and subject to the following conditions:
The Hours Granted are as follows:
14:00 to 22:00 on one Saturday in July per year
The Licensing Sub-Committee had considered the operating schedule and resolved to lift the restriction relating to events having to be ticketed and attended only by persons 18 years of age and over.
The Premises Licence Holder shall notify the Licensing Authority, South Wales Police and the Environmental Health Department a minimum of 56 days prior to each event and provide each with an event plan.
The steps contained within Part 3 of the Applicants’ operating schedule would not be applied but must be addressed within the specific event plans.
Reason for decisions
The Licensing Sub-Committee understood the points made by the Responsible Authorities and their rationale in relation to the proposed conditions, however they were of the view that specific and tailored event plans relating to a specific event were the best mechanism for addressing the responsible authorities’ concerns.
The Chairman reminded the Responsible Authorities that if they wished, they had the right to review the licence and Applicants had the right to apply for a variation / minor variation as they saw fit in due course.