Agenda, decisions and draft minutes
Venue: Remote Meeting
Contact: Fiona Young Democratic Services
To elect a Member to act as Chair of the meeting.
Resolved: That Cllr Norman be elected to chair the hearing.
The Chair introduced the Sub-Committee Members, the Legal Adviser, the Democratic Services officer, the Licensing Manager Lesley Cooke, the Applicant’s Solicitor Rebecca Ingram, the police Representor PC Kim Hollis, and the Licensing Authority Representor Helen Sefton. Also present as witnesses and / or to answer questions were Mark Burville and David Oxtoby of The Alchemist Ltd., Max Reeves of the Helmsley Group (the landlords of the premises), and PS Jackie Booth of North Yorkshire Police.
Declarations of Interest
At this point in the meeting, Members are asked to declare any disclosable pecuniary interest or other registerable interest they might have in respect of business on this agenda, if they have not already done so in advance on the Register of Interests.
Members were invited to declare at this point in the meeting any disclosable pecuniary interest or other registerable interest they might have in respect of business on the agenda, if they had not already done so in advance on the Register of Interests. No interests were declared.
Exclusion of Press and Public
To consider excluding the Press and Public during the sub-committee’s deliberations and decision-making at the end of the hearing, on the grounds that the public interest in excluding the public outweighs the public interest in that part of the meeting taking place in public, under Regulation 14 of the Licensing Act 2003 (Hearings) Regulations 2005.
Resolved: That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during the sub-committee’s deliberations and decision-making at the end of the hearing, on the grounds that the public interest in excluding the public outweighs the public interest in that part of the meeting taking place in public, under Regulation 14 of the Licensing Act 2003 (Hearings) Regulations 2005.
To approve and sign the minutes of the Licensing Hearingheld on 17 November 2022.
Resolved: That the minutes of the Licensing Hearing held on 17 November 2022 be approved as a correct record, to be signed by the Chair at a later date.
Hearing reconvened remotely in private session at 11:45 am on 22 December 2022
Present: Councillors Norman (Chair), Cuthbertson and Melly
The Sub-Committee resolved to grant the licence for the following activities and timings with modified/additional conditions imposed by the sub-committee (Option 2) as set out below:
The Operating Schedule conditions numbered A 1 to 26, B 1 to 12, C 1 to 12 and D 1 to 5 contained in pages 11 to 15 of the Agenda Supplement published on 19 December 2022 shall be added to the licence SUBJECT TO the following modifications:
(a) Condition A1 is deleted.
(b) Condition A3 is deleted and is replaced with the following condition:
“There shall be no vertical drinking of alcohol on the premises. The supply of alcohol shall be by table service only. Alcohol must not be sold, supplied, or consumed on the premises otherwise than to seated persons who are taking substantial table meals served and consumed at the table and provided always that the consumption of alcohol by such persons is ancillary to taking such meals.
Notwithstanding this condition at any one time up to 8 customers are permitted to be served alcohol for consumption whilst seated at the bar if they are waiting for their table to become available.”
(c) Condition A4 is deleted and is and is replaced with the following condition:
“There shall be a minimum of 52 covers in the area marked green on the plan and a minimum of 60 covers provided for customer use throughout the rest of the premises at all times the premises is open and operating for business”
(d) Condition A5 is deleted and is replaced with the following condition:
“The loose furniture layout as shown on the plan attached to the premises licence shall not be materially departed from without prior approval from the Licensing Authority.”
(e) Condition A 6 is deleted.
(f) Condition A 7 is deleted.
(g) Condition A 23 is deleted and is replaced with the following condition:
“There shall be no promotional sale of alcohol unless it is part of a food promotion.”
(h) Condition D5 is deleted.
The licence is also subject to the mandatory conditions applicable to licensed premises.
Members considered an application by The Alchemist Bar & Restaurant Ltd. for a Premises Licence in respect of The Alchemist, Nessgate, York, YO1 9NF.
In considering the application and the representations made, the Sub-Committee concluded that the following licensing objectives were relevant to this Hearing:
1. The Prevention of Crime and Disorder
2. Public Safety
3. The Prevention of Public Nuisance
In coming to its decision, the Sub-Committee took into consideration all the evidence and submissions that were presented, and determined their relevance to the issues raised and the above licensing objectives, including:
1. The application form.
2. The papers before it.
3. The Licensing Manager’s report and her comments at the Hearing.
The Licensing Manager outlined the report and the annexes. She noted that the premises, previously occupied by RBS and Thomas Cook, was located in the Red Zone of the Cumulative Impact Area (CIA), and confirmed that the consultation process had been carried out correctly. She drew attention to the representations received from North Yorkshire Police and the Licensing Authority, and the additional papers submitted by the Applicant as published in the Agenda Supplement. Finally, she advised the Sub Committee of the options open to them in determining the application.
In response to a question from the Sub-Committee, the Licensing Manager confirmed that the Red Zone was an area within the CIA containing the highest concentration of licensed premises.
4. The representations made by Rebecca Ingram, solicitor, on behalf of the Applicant.
Having introduced the representatives of The Alchemist and The Helmsley Group who were present at the hearing, Ms Ingram drew attention to the brand and style of The Alchemist as set out in the additional papers. She stated that the issues to be decided were quite narrow, as the Applicant had been able to work with the Responsible Authorities. A meeting with PC Hollis and the Licensing Manager before the application had made it clear that a comprehensive operating schedule would be required, and this has been provided.
Ms Ingram submitted that, based on the evidence, the two most appropriate options in this case were to grant the application either on the basis of the revised schedule (Exhibit DO2 in the Agenda Supplement) or with the addition of the further condition sought by the Police and the Licensing Authority requiring the operation to be predominantly food led. The condition in issue is whether the premises should operate as predominantly food led. This was not a condition that the Applicant could agree to because The Alchemist was a cocktail bar/restaurant and the term ‘food led’ was vague and imprecise, which was contrary to the principles in paragraph 1.16 of the Section 182 guidance. If compliance with the condition was based on the operation’s food take exceeding its drinks take, then the Applicant could not comply. If based on its ‘food plus drinks’ take exceeding its drinks alone take, then it could. The Applicant intended to invest £1.8m in the premises and could not do so without absolute ... view the full minutes text for item 52.