Hosts savour success in

By John Harrington

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Leicester License

Hosts are beginning to score victories against councils that have set unfair conditions on their licences. Leicester licensee John Fenton...

Hosts are beginning to score victories against councils that have set unfair conditions on their licences.

Leicester licensee John Fenton successfully appealed against a condition that he must employ doorstaff seven days a week

and have a separate family area at his pub.

Fenton told magistrates in Leicester that he had only called the police four times in his four years at the Avenue.

He said he had stopped putting on live music at the pub, in Aylestone, because of the noise.

Leicester City Council had required one third of the pub to be set aside as a family area.

Fenton said this was unnecessary because children rarely visited the pub.

The magistrates ruled that the council was wrong to force the licensee to create a family area, and he should be allowed to make up his own mind about doorstaff.

Magistrates also overturned the rule that doors and windows must be closed to crack down on noise.

The council was forced to pay £1,250 costs.

Sunderland host Richard Cooney is also celebrating after the decision not to grant later opening at the Ashbrooke pub in Leighton Road was over-ruled.

The initial application for later opening was thrown out by councillors in September, after a concerned local pensioner claimed it would cause extra noise.

But earlier this month magistrates ruled the venue can serve drinks until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays, with one hour's drinking up time.

Cooney said he would ask people to keep the noise down in the garden - and had already put up signs urging customers to leave the premises quietly.

Magistrates noted the number of police call-outs to the pub had halved since Cooney took on the pub one year ago.

However, amplified entertainment will not be allowed until a council report is published and acted upon.

Federation of Licensed Victuallers Associations chief executive Tony Payne said: "Magistrates have dealt with the licensed trade before.

"They understand it better than a lot of local council sub committees, which can be influenced by other councillors."

l Have you won - or lost - an appeal against restrictions set on your licence? Call John Harrington on 01293 610481.

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