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News - 3 October 2007

Brighton seeks to limit new licensed premises

Brighton City Council and Sussex Police are investigating the possibility of preventing new bars and pubs from opening in a huge city centre exclusion zone.

The scheme proposes using the cumulative impact of all the licensed premises in an area stretching from Hove to Kemp Town and the seafront to Trafalgar Street to deny planning consent for any new licensed premises unless they can prove that they will not add to social disorder. It is believed to be the largest area in the UK under consideration for a cumulative impact assessment.

Brighton & Hove has over 1000 licensed premises and there is increasing concern over their effect on the city’s reputation as a destination. However the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) has condemned the proposal as being a sledgehammer to crack a nut although not all licensed premises would be discouraged. There is a general feeling that the city has too many "vertical drinking" establishments popular with "stag and hen" parties but more restaurants attracting a better behaved clientele may be welcomed.

The case for increased restrictions isn't helped by the fact that public place disorder in Brighton & Hove is actually declining but Sussex Police have produced a 76 page dossier supporting their case. 

The city council is currently looking into the legality of the ban and will report in November.

Read related items on:
Retail, pubs, clubs and restaurants
Anti-social behaviour
Brighton & Hove City Council
British Beer and Pub Association
Sussex Police

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