Takeaway’s late licence approved

A takeaway can stay open into the early hours of the morning despite objections from police and licensing officials.

Tuesday, 26th November 2019, 3:39 pm

The owners of Pizza and Grill Junction, in Preston Street, told a licensing panel that they had sunk their life savings into the business without knowing that they had to shut at 11pm.

But Usman Mubashar and Muhammad Waseem said that this would mean missing out on the busiest trading hours in the area.

After pleading with councillors, they have now been told that they can stay open until 1.30am on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning.

The takeaway owners had hoped to close at 4am but proved willing to compromise when they made their case to a Brighton and Hove City Council licensing panel last month.

Sussex Police and council licensing officials were concerned about the potential for further trouble in an area where crime and anti-social behaviour already cause problems.

As a result, the council has a policy of restricting new licences for pubs, clubs and late-night food and drink across a swathe of central Brighton.

And the police step up their presence at busy times through “Operation Marble”, aimed at keeping people safe in the area on a night out.

Mr Mubashar and Mr Waseem said that if they could stay open until 1.30am or 2am, their business should be viable.

The takeaway did not sell alcohol, they said, but offered a free soft drink with every meal.

After the panel approved a late licence for the takeaway, a letter from the council said: “The panel does appreciate the concerns of the police and licensing authority with regard to dispersal … but consider that this modest grant to 1.30am three days a week is not likely to add to negative cumulative impact or undermine the licensing objectives.

“The opening times are well within existing ‘Operation Marble’ hours and the premises will not be open other days in the week, for example, on student nights and when there are less police resources.”