Pub's licence suspended for failing to give police assault footage

By Georgina Townshend

- Last updated on GMT

Unacceptable nuisance: pub has licence suspended following police operation
Unacceptable nuisance: pub has licence suspended following police operation

Related tags Data protection act 1998

A Leysdown-on-Sea pub has had its licence suspended with immediate effect after it failed to provide Kent Police with CCTV footage of an assault.

On Thursday 13 July, officers visited 16 venues across the Isle of Sheppey to check they were meeting the conditions of their alcohol licence ahead of the summer holidays.

As part of this operation, which aims to tackle crime and disorder, Kent Police made an application to Swale Borough Council for Merlin's Entertainment Complex, based in Leysdown-on-Sea, to have its licence suspended.

According to Kent Police, the application was made after the venue failed to provide CCTV footage of an assault – which took place in Leysdown Road on Sunday 9 July.

Immediate effect

On Monday 17 July, Swale Borough Council’s licensing sub-committee ruled the venue’s licence can be suspended with immediate effect, Kent Police said. This is an interim measure and means the public bar will remain closed until a full review hearing takes place in early August.

However, the premises has since provided Kent Police with CCTV and it will now be allowed to open for two pre-planned functions, “as long as it ensures three SIA-licensed door staff are present for the entirety of each event”, said a spokesman for the police.

Inspector Craig West, from Kent Police’s Swale Community Safety Unit, said antisocial behaviour caused by excess drinking is “an unacceptable nuisance for people living in, and visiting, the Isle of Sheppey".

“That is why we are running this operation, in partnership with a number of other organisations,” he added.

'Help business flourish'

“We are taking proactive steps to ensure residents and young families coming to visit on holiday enjoy Sheppey, which will in turn help local businesses flourish.

“Most venues are compliant with the responsibilities placed on them by their licences and we are happy to work alongside them to ensure people enjoy their summer here.

“Should any issues arise, we will work with our partners to use the full remit of our powers to take robust and proportionate action”.

The Morning Advertiser​ has contacted Merlin's Entertainment Complex but did not receive a response at the time of publishing.

Rules on CCTV

According to Poppleston Allen's solicitor Richard Allen, rules on CCTV can be a "rather complicated area".

"Personal data is protected under the Data Protection Act and limited information can only be disclosed in certain circumstances, such as to prevent or detect a crime," he said. "Even in this situation a request should be specific as to what is required.   

"I don’t know the details of the premises in question and it is not uncommon for some premises licences to contain a condition regarding the disclosing of CCTV footage. 

"Failure to comply with the condition could result in review of a licence. However, the condition does not permit the licence holder to breach any obligations under the DPA."

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