The closure of Richmond’s Angel & Crown follows a decision on 10 April 2018, which required the pub’s owners to pay Richmond council’s legal costs after the site’s operators withdrew a legal challenge to conditions imposed on its licence.
In November 2017, the council’s licensing sub-committee imposed a number of restrictions on the Angel & Crown’s premises licence at a review hearing called in response to ongoing noise disturbances.
The owners and premises licence holders, Fuller, Smith and Turner, initially appealed the decision, but have since withdrawn their legal challenge.
The council was awarded legal costs of £16,000, to be paid by the Angel & Crown’s owners within 28 days, after an agreement was reached out of court which included the imposition of a number of conditions on the site’s license.
The Richmond pub’s licensee for the past 13 years, Steve Sains, stated that financial and emotional pressure eventually forced the closure.
While highlighting business rates and minimum wage increases as contributing factors, Sains stated that conditions imposed on the pub’s licence forced him into an impossible situation.
Licensing conditions outlined by Sains included restrictions on opening hours, a doorman on duty on Friday and Saturday nights – two on duty during England’s World Cup matches – a noise limiter on the pub’s speakers, no more than four people outside at a time, and no doors or windows to be open.
A spokesperson for Fuller’s said: “The lessee at The Angel & Crown decided to surrender the lease – and we are currently looking to appoint a new tenant.
“We hope to have the pub open again as soon as possible. With regards to the licensing conditions, we are continuing our discussions with the licensing authority.”
The news follows the release of figures by the Office for National Statistics which show that the number of working pubs in London had fallen to 3,530 – a 27% reduction since 2001.