Stonegate bar has licence suspended over brawls

By Alice Leader contact

- Last updated on GMT

‘Serious disorder’: Yates has been closed temporarily after police were called to regulate two incidents
‘Serious disorder’: Yates has been closed temporarily after police were called to regulate two incidents

Related tags: Crime, Police, Stonegate

A Stonegate bar has had its licence suspended after fights broke out on two occasions within four days of each other.

The decision to suspend the licence of Yates bar in Friar Street, Reading, was made at Reading Borough Council’s licensing applications sub-committee meeting on 8 January.

The hearing came after two incidences that occurred at the premises which has, in turn, resulted in closure until further notice after its licence was suspended.

A spokesperson for Yates said: “We took the decision to voluntarily close the bar earlier in the week and are co-operating with the local licensing teams ahead of a further meeting at the end of the month.”

Knocked unconscious

The first of the incidences was on New Year's Eve when a brawl broke out at around 2am that was unable to be contained by the bar’s security and resulted in police officers having to enter the premises.

A letter from Thames Valley Police to the premises supervisor, John Button, told how this later resulted in 20 police officers forming a police line to disperse the crowd.

One male was also knocked unconscious in the street and a number of sporadic fights occurred within the premises with assaults inflicted on security staff and a police officer.  

The second incident was on 4 January, which led to another event of mass disorder that broke out at around 9pm.

On this occasion, police received information that a large and angry crowd were gathering outside of Yates due to an externally booked birthday party where a number of the attendees were under-age.

Small pockets of disorder

Approximately 150 people gathered in the street of which the majority of whom were all aged under 18.

When informed they were unable to enter the premises, they refused “to leave the area and small pockets of disorder ensued across Friar Street”.

This resulted in police officers once again requiring to de-escalate the situation.

The letter read: “It is my opinion that Yates has been associated with serious crime and serious disorder and I believe that it is necessary for this licence to be suspended immediately pending the full hearing.”

The licence was suspended until 31 January 2020 when a full review hearing will take place.

Related topics: Licensing law, Health & safety

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