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LICENSING SUB-COMMITTEE

 

Minutes of a meeting held on 16th February, 2017.

 

Present:  Councillors Mrs. P. Drake, Mrs. V.M. Hartrey and A.G. Powell.

 

Also present:  Licensing Officers (Vale of Glamorgan Council).

 

The Scrutiny Support Officer explained as to the procedure to be used for the hearing and advised that copies were included within the agenda. 

 

 

(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 Grant of Premises Licence - Tresilian Wood, St. Donats, CF61 1ZB -

 

Also present:  Mr. T. Roberts (Applicant’s Representative), Mr. T. Parker (Applicant) and Mrs. P. Warren (Applicant).

 

The Chairman welcomed those present to the Sub-Committee hearing and established the identity of each party.  He asked if all parties had made written representations to which all advised that they had. 

 

In presenting the report, the Licensing Officer advised that the Licensing Act 2003 centred around four licensing objectives.  The objectives were: 

  • The prevention of crime and disorder
  • Public safety
  • The prevention of public nuisance
  • The protection of children from harm.

 

The officer also advised that the application was submitted on 22nd December, 2016.  The operating schedule of the application stated that the Applicant operates a retreat/camp site which includes a communal area which has facilities for a bar area for guests and visitors to eat and purchase alcohol.  The communal area was identified as the Hide Pavilion on the plan attached to the application and was stated to have a capacity of hosting up to 60 individuals.  The full operating schedule and plan relating to the application was attached at Appendix A to the officer’s report.  However, Members were requested to note that the application had been subject to an amendment during the course of the consultation period. 

 

The application sought authorisation for the following licensable activities (showing the amended application details) to be carried out at the Hide Pavilion:

 

Hours premises are open to the public:

Sunday - 11:00 hours to 23:00 hours

Monday to Saturday - 11:00 hours to 23:30 hours.

 

Sale by retail of alcohol:

Sunday - 11:00 hours to 22:30 hours

Monday to Saturday - 11:00 hours to 23:00 hours.

 

The Sub-Committee was advised that there was an administrative error in the supply of alcohol section of the application, where the terminal hour for Sunday was given as 23:00 rather than 22:30.

 

The Applicant had withdrawn non-standard timings for New Year from the application together with the application for live music as a licensable activity.

 

The application included the request to offer on-sales and off-sales.  The latter would be required to enable customers to purchase alcohol in the Hide Pavilion for consumption in the cabins and lodges.  However, the application now included an additional restriction within the operating schedule relating to off-sales as follows;

The off-sales of alcohol shall be available to residents of Tresilian Wood only. 

 

The Licensing Team Manager informed the Committee that there had been no representations made by Responsible Authorities, which included South Wales Police, Shared Regulatory Services Neighbourhood Services Team and the Planning Department.  The representations, and/or subsequent withdrawals made, during the 28 day consultation period were as follows:

 

On 13th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mr. and Mrs. Carey.  A copy of this representation was attached to the report at Appendix B. 

 

On 19th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mr. S. Hopkins, as a local resident.  The representation was attached at Appendix C to the report. 

 

On 4th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mr. and Mrs. Darwell, as local residents, followed by a further submission on 18th January, 2017.  A copy of the representations were attached to the report at Appendix D.

 

On 19th January, 2017 a representation was received from the Vice-Principal (Pastoral) of UWC Atlantic College; Mr. N. Lush.  The representation was attached at Appendix E of the report.  A supplementary document was provided to the Committee confirming that UWC Atlantic College had withdrawn their representation, on 13th February, following communications with the Applicant. 

 

On 26th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mr. D. Williams, as a local resident, followed by a further submission on 16th January, 2017.  A copy of these representations were attached to the report at Appendix F.

 

Representations were received on 16th and 24th January, 2017 from local residents Sietse Los and Marianne van den Bree.  These representations were attached at Appendix G to the report. 

 

On 4th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mr. and Mrs. Clarke as local residents.  This representation was attached at Appendix H of the report.

 

On 16th January, 2017 a representation was received from the St. Donat’s Community Council Clerk; Mrs. A. Knight.  This representation was attached at Appendix I to the report.

 

Also, on 16th January, 2017 a representation was received from local residents; Mr. and Mrs. Cain.  The representation was attached at Appendix J within the officer’s report.

 

A representation was received from a local resident Mrs. J. Stead, on 17th January, 2017.  The representation was attached at Appendix K to the report.

 

On 18th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mrs. M. Coyle as a local resident.  The representation was attached at Appendix L to the report.

 

Representations were received on 12th and 18th January, 2017 from a local resident, Mr. M. Thomas.  These representations were attached at Appendix M to the report.

 

On 18th January, 2017 a representation was received from Mr. and Mrs. Cowie in their capacity as local residents.  A copy of the representation was attached to the report at Appendix N.

 

Also on 18th January, 2017 a representation was received from a local resident, Ms. J. Featherstone.  This representation was attached at Appendix O to the report.

 

Mr. C. Rees made a representation, as a local resident, on 11th January, 2017.  The representation was attached to the report at Appendix P.

 

The Officer apprised the Committee that it was the practice of the authority to reproduce letters of representation in full.  However, Members were advised that only the issues which may be considered as relevant had been highlighted in paragraph 7 of the report.  In addition, the representations relating to the provision of live music were also no longer relevant to this application.  The relevant sections of legislation, guidance or policy which related to this matter were therefore as follows:

 

With regard to references that there was no need for an additional licensed premises in the area, paragraph 13.19 of the statutory guidance provided as follows:

 

"The need for licensed premises

 

13.19 There can be confusion about the difference between the “need” for premises and the “cumulative impact” of premises on the licensing objectives, for example, on crime and disorder. “Need” concerns the commercial demand for another pub or restaurant or hotel and was a matter for the planning authority and for the market. This was not a matter for a licensing authority in discharging its licensing functions or for its statement of licensing policy." 

 

With regard to public safety, paragraph 2.6 of the statutory guidance sets out that

 

"Licence holders have a responsibility to ensure the safety of those using their premises, as a part of their duties under the 2003 Act. This concerns the safety of people using the relevant premises rather than public health which is addressed in other legislation."   Beyond ensuring safe departure from the premises, matters relating to general traffic management, lighting, and road configuration are not matters for the licensing authority to consider.

 

Paragraph 15.6 of the statutory guidance highlights that "as a result of deregulatory changes that have amended the 2003 Act, no licence is required for the following activities:

 

"Live music: no licence permission is required for: 

  • a performance of unamplified live music between 08.00 and 23.00 on any day, on any premises.
  • a performance of amplified live music between 08.00 and 23.00 on any day on premises authorised to sell alcohol for consumption on those premises, provided that the audience does not exceed 500." 

Therefore, the officer advised that the provision of live music, should a licence be granted for the sale of alcohol, and provided the above conditions are met, will not be a matter for consideration by this Sub-Committee. 

 

The Chairman invited the Applicant to make their representations in support of their application. 

 

Mr. Roberts, representative for the Applicant, advised that Ms. Warren had submitted an application for the sale of alcohol and the Applicant recognised that the close of serving time should be 22:30 and not 23:00, as the application currently reflects, on Sunday trading hours.  This allowed time to close the venue half an hour later at 23:00.  The Applicant had offered an additional condition, that alcohol was not sold to persons under the age of 24 and any said persons, must be accompanied by a person over the age of 24 if they were on site.  Representations had subsequently been withdrawn following the offered condition.  The licence to sell alcohol off-site enabled the Applicant to engage with outside clients to host pop-up events.  The events would be infrequent and cater for a maximum of 60 people including staff.  Sale of alcohol would allow the Applicant to keep business options open and not to operate a passing trade public house.  Off-licensed sales of alcohol was strictly for residents only.  The site, as envisaged to be, consisted of the communal area called the Pavilion and 11 cabins/lodgings across the grounds.  Residents would only be able to purchase alcohol within the Pavilion and then return to their accommodation.  This further prevented any local students from purchasing alcohol as they would not be residents and/or over the 24 age restriction. 

 

The Applicant was not looking to take advantage of the de-regulatory changes that had amended the 2003 Licensing Act with regards to live music.  It was not the Appellant’s intention to run the business as a live music venue.  Any live music would reflect the relaxing and quiet business model to create a retreat atmosphere such as a single acoustic guitar.  All music would be contained indoors. 

 

The Applicant would ensure that the site was signposted, as a residents only facility that would be clear to any passing trade. 

 

The Chairman asked whether there were any questions from the Other Parties for the Applicant. 

 

The Licensing Officer asked a point of clarification with regards to the licensing objective, point (e) on page 13 of the application.  The Applicant clarified that all clients who were over 18 who looked under the age of 24 would be asked for identification. 

 

The Other Persons present were represented collectively by Mr. Hopkins who asked the Applicant to clarify why she had applied for a licence for a public house within a field and whether the application made was a definitive business application.  The Applicant’s representative advised that the application made had not been substantially altered to imply that it had been originally made to develop a public house.  The Applicant also advised that there had been some confusion as the application should have read as ‘off-sale to on-site’ residents.  Mr. Hopkins asked Ms. Warren to confirm if the mistake in the wording was not her intention.  The Applicant answered yes. 

 

Mr. Hopkins asked the Applicant to clarify the use of the term ‘local club member’ under point (a) of the licensing objectives, within the application, as there was a concern over passing trade using the facility.  The Applicant advised that the use of the term ‘club’ was to deter passing trade and to invite residents on-site.  There was no intention of setting up a public club as the site does not have the facilities to cater for this.  The intention was to have strict control over entrants.  The Applicant expressed her surprise over the question as the issue of the word ‘club’ had not been raised previously at either of the community meetings held. 

 

The Other Persons asked the Applicant if the wording of the condition contained within the supplementary document on page 2, bullet point 2 should read; off-sales - there would be no sale of off-sales alcohol to non-residents.  The Applicant’s representative advised that the Applicant maintained her statement within the correspondence. 

 

Mr. Hopkins informed the Committee that at the original Community Council meeting, in December 2016, it was recommended that the licence application be refused and subsequently the Applicant had removed the request for music ahead of the second Community Council meeting.  However, due to the de-regulatory changes this alteration was meaningless as it would still be the Applicant’s legal right to have music if the licence was granted.  The Applicant acknowledged that it would be her legal right to have music, however; loud and regular music would entirely go against the business model.

 

The Applicant apprised the Committee that she had spoken to the Licensing Officer following the first community meeting, who had offered her advice with regard to music licensing laws.  She had tried to accommodate and consider the local community and would continue to do so by maintaining the business model.  The Applicant apprised the Committee of the curfew in place for residents and the terms and conditions specified at the time of booking to maintain a quiet and respectful site for its neighbours.  There were five members of staff who endorse the retreat ethos and any disruptive behaviour was dealt with immediately.  If behaviour was unacceptable it would result in the client being evicted from the site.  On a normal day to day basis there would be very few clients on site at any one time and management would be prepared to inform clients that they could no longer purchase alcohol to maintain a safe environment for all persons using the site.

 

Mr. Hopkins asked the Applicant whether she would be responsible for closing the site in the evenings.  The Applicant advised that on a normal operational evening she would be, with the support of Mr. Parker who was also a Director of the business.  If the site was at full capacity due to a pop up event then extra staff would be employed. 

 

The Other Persons asked if it was the Applicant’s intention to operate the business 365 days a year.  The Applicant advised yes as they are currently licensed to do so. 

 

The Other Persons requested a brief adjournment to deliberate on any further questions for the Applicant.  The Chairman agreed to their request.  The Chairman requested that an aerial map be provided to the Panel of the local area, by the Licensing Officer, during the adjournment.

 

Following the adjournment, the Chairman introduced the map document to the table and thanked the Licensing Officer for providing the document to the Committee.  The Chairman re-opened the meeting and invited the Other Persons to make their representations to the Sub-Committee. 

 

Mr. Hopkins advised the Committee that the Other Persons had nothing further to add than had already been included in the written representations and they had no intention to call upon any witnesses.  The concessions that had been made by the Applicant and highlighted by the Licensing Officer previously during the meeting had been helpful. 

 

The Chairman asked all the Other Persons present if they were happy that their representations had been fully heard and represented by Mr. Hopkins.  All persons agreed.

 

The Chairman invited all other parties to address any questions to the Other Persons. 

 

The Applicant’s representative reminded the Committee that the objections made by the Other Persons were made under all four of the licensing objectives and asked Mr. Hopkins if their concerns had been mitigated.  Mr. Hopkins informed the Committee that having seen the supplementary documents provided to the Committee the concerns under the objective; the protection of children from harm had been mitigated.  The Applicant’s representative asked the Other Persons if their concerns over off-sales of alcohol were also mitigated.  Mr. Hopkins stated that the Other Persons acknowledged there was a considerable degree of mitigation of the matter but all Other Persons present still had concerns over students from UWC Atlantic College being under the influence of alcohol and the effects of this on the nearby village. 

 

There were no questions for the Other Persons from the Licensing Officer.

 

The Chairman asked the Licensing Officer if the Licensing Authority had any further comments to sum up their case, the officer advised that she did not. 

 

Following the Chairman’s invitation to sum up, the Other Persons advised that they had no more comments to add. 

 

The Chairman asked the Applicant whether she had anything further to add.  In response, her representative summarised the main concerns raised from the application and the measures the Applicant had taken to address them:

 

  • Provision of live music

            Any music proposed was to adhere to the business model and the effect on the local atmosphere was to be minimal.

 

  • Alcohol sales available to students of UWC Atlantic College

            The Committee had been apprised of the College’s position and the Other Persons had accepted that their protection of children from harm concerns had been mitigated.  The Applicant’s proposed condition of alcohol not being sold to persons under the age of 24 would not be affected by the licence being granted.

 

  • Narrow access road

            The concern had been raised within a written representation and the licensee was responsible for clients exiting the site safely.  The Applicant would continue to do so.

 

  • Disruptive behaviour due to alcohol consumption

            The Applicant strongly wished to avoid that type of behaviour as it does not compliment the business model.  It was behaviour unlikely to happen in the business setting, however, if it were, the Applicant was experienced to deal with it effectively and efficiently.

 

  • Effect on local community

            The Applicant felt that this was totally mitigated and reassured that local residents were not classed as ‘extra’ passing trade.  Evidence provided to the Committee had been given to reinforce this mitigation and to endorse local community working.

 

The Chairman addressed the Panel Member’s questions to the Applicant.  Members wished to clarify how serving staff would be able to identify individuals who are resident.  The Applicant advised that each accommodation unit had its own unique tab code that would be required at the point of sale.  At full capacity, there would only be 32 new residents so the staff would be familiar with the individuals.  The Chairman also asked if residents returned to their units and continued to consume alcohol, which subsequently developed into disruptive behaviour, how staff would know about the behaviour to deal with it.  The Applicant advised that the business owners are on site at all times when residents are on site.  If it was apparent that behaviour was deteriorating, due to alcohol consumption, then the client would be told that they are no longer able to purchase alcohol and the behaviour would result in eviction if it continued.  The Applicant also apprised the Committee of a future planning application for a caretaking room to be built on site which would further act as a monitoring base for staff whilst clients were on site. 

 

Following the summing up, and there being no further questions, the Licensing Sub-Committee retired to consider the application in private. 

 

On return the Chairman advised that the application was for the grant of a premises licence at Tresilian Wood, St. Donats, CF61 1ZB.  The application was for the sale of alcohol.  He advised that representations had been received from the Licensing Authority and Other Persons. 

 

In delivering the decision of the Committee, the Chairman summarised the representations presented by all parties at the hearing:

 

Licensing Authority:

 

The sale of alcohol hours had been amended to:

Sunday - 11:00 hours to 22:30 hours

Monday to Saturday - 11:00 hours to 23:00 hours.

 

The off-sales of alcohol shall be available to residents of Tresilian Wood only.

 

The Applicant had withdrawn non-standard timings for the New Year from the application.

 

The Applicant had withdrawn live music, as a licensable activity, from the application.

 

The supplementary document had been provided to evidence the withdrawal of a representation within the Appendix E of the report.

 

Other Persons:

 

The Other Persons areas of concern referred to the following licensing objectives (as per Appendices B through to P of the officer’s report):

 

  • Prevention of crime and disorder
  • Public safety
  • Prevention of public nuisance.

 

The Other Persons conceded that they no longer had any concerns relating to the fourth objective; Protection of children from harm. 

 

Applicant/Applicant’s Representative:

 

The Applicant informed the Committee of the business model to create a relaxing and respectful retreat environment.

 

The Applicant adopted two new conditions following proactive correspondence with the local community:

 

  • No alcohol would be sold to any persons under 24 years of age.   There was also an age restriction for booking accommodation and access to the site of 24 years.  Any persons under this age would need to be accompanied by an adult over 24 years.  This was stated within the business booking system on the booking webpage. 
  • Off-sales - there would be no sale of alcohol to non-residents. 

 

The Applicant had taken into consideration the objections received and had mitigated these by amending their original application prior to the Sub-Committee hearing.

 

In addition to previously received papers, the Panel Members requested and had sight of a map of the location showing an aerial view of the business in relation to the nearby village. 

 

The Chairman advised that following consideration of the application, the representations of the Other Persons, Local Authority and the Applicant, and having considered the Home Office Guidance, along with the Council’s Statement of Licensing Policy, and also taking into account the Licensing Act 2003, as amended, in particular the licensing objectives, the Licensing Sub-Committee had

 

RESOLVED - T H A T the application be granted, as applied for, taking into account the amendments made to the original application prior to the hearing.

 

Reason for decision

 

The Panel felt that all measures had been taken by the Applicant to ensure compliance with the four licensing objectives.