Cumulative Impact Areas
The Croydon Advertiser has recently confirmed proposals for Croydon to introduce a cumulative impact area.
Not just any cumulative impact area but one covering 17 out of 24 wards thus making it probably the largest in the country.
It has been worrying to read the comments of the cabinet member responsible because there does seem to be some confusion as to whether it is to be introduced to prevent further off-licences or more generally.
One of the justifications reported is concerns about public health but that is not yet a ground which should be considered and may leave the Council open to legal challenge.
In any event it is difficult to envisage how it can be shown to the satisfaction of the Council as a whole that such a large area is suffering so much from crime and disorder and public nuisance problems that no new licences (either on or off) or variations should be granted.
It is of concern that a restrictive policy covering such a wide area may be introduced without proper consideration of both the evidence and the effect on the late night economy and business in general. It is likely that there will be further articles on this both in the local press and in the national licensing press.
For more information please contact James Anderson
Comment:- Have local authorities finally seen the light?
Their policies of granting licences to anyone taking a town centre or urban property without justification of need, is possibly coming home to roost.
The great proliferation of gaudy bars and clubs, battling for a limited amount of business, generating price wars, binge drinking, excessive litter crime and so on.
The good old traditional pubs have seen their businesses diminish, their viability brought into question, good operators being pushed out to be replaced by corporate revolving licensees, who vanish at the whiff of trouble, to be replaced by another short term expert.
The old licensing system was not ideal, but it did support good operators, the hours may have been a pain commercially, but we didn’t have the social problems that have developed and now make regular news headlines and every anti drink politician uses as a banner to bash the traditional English pub. The majority were well run and very few had revolving licensees, the other factor that these instant experts failed to consider, is and always will be, that Joe Public only has a specific amount of money to spend on socialising, if you extend the hours, people come out later, your wage bill goes up and they start drinking at home, before they go out.
If the real experts in the industry had been consulted, the people that run the pubs, not the banner waving politicos and hangers on, jumping on a band waggon, we might have had a good compromise rather than the social disaster that exists at the moment, destroying pubs that have been with us for centuries, replacing them with tacky, garish bars and clubs wioth heavies checking people in and throwing the drunks on to the streets for the Police and the NHS to sort out.
When in reality it was caused by corporate greed, short sighted Local Authorities and some very incompetent decisions made well up in the Government.
Purely my view.