Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Licensing Sub-committee
Monday, 10th June, 2019 10.00 am

Venue: The Executive Meeting Room - Third Floor, The Guildhall. View directions

Contact: Joanne Wildsmith, Democratic Services tel: 9283 4057  Email: Democratic@Portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

26.

Appointment of Chair

Minutes:

Councillor Claire Udy was appointed to chair this meeting.

 

After the introductions had been made she explained the request to vary the order of agenda items so that the confidential matter (personal licence) was held in exempt session before public consideration of the item relating to the application for renewal of the SEV licence.

27.

Declarations of Members' Interests

Minutes:

There were no declarations of members' interests.

28.

Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 - Licensing of Sex Establishments - Sexual Entertainment Venue - Application for the renewal of a licence – Wellhot Ltd - Elegance 1 Granada Road Southsea PO4 0RD pdf icon PDF 64 KB

The purpose of the report is for the Committee to determine an application for the renewal of a sexual entertainment venue licence in respect of the premises situated at 1 Granada Road, Southsea, Portsmouth, PO4 0RD and known by the name of Elegance.

 

 

RECOMMENDED

a) that the Committee determine the application for the renewal of a sexual entertainment venue licence in respect of the premises situated at 1 Granada Road, Southsea, Portsmouth, PO4 0RD and known by the name of Elegance; and

 

b) in determining this application, the Committee shall have regard to paragraph 7.10a of its statement of licensing policy as set out below:

 

Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph 7.10 (relating to the numerical control on the number of sex establishments in a particular locality), the presumption to refuse shall not apply to:

The renewal, transfer or variation of an existing sex establishment licence; or

The grant of a new sex establishment licence, whereby an application was made during the transitional period 1 November 2011 until 31 October 2012 to those premises that can demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Licensing Authority that during the 12 months prior to the commencement of the transitional period they have been regularly providing sexual entertainment that previously was only regulated under the Licensing Act 2003.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

In the matter of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 and the application for the renewal of a sexual entertainment venue licence in respect of Elegance, 1 Granada Road, Southsea, PO4 0RD

 

The Sub Committee considered very carefully an application for renewal of a sexual entertainment licence at Elegance, 1 Granada Road, Southsea.

 

It paid due regard to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982, the Licensing Manager's report, written representations and oral evidence given at the hearing from the Applicant's representative as well as the adopted statement of licensing policy and the Home Office Sexual Entertainment Venues Guidance for England and Wales.

Human Rights legislation was borne in mind whilst making the decision - this included the right to freedom of expression, protection of property balanced with rights of objectors.

 

Particular consideration was given to the public sector equality duty in accordance with s.149 of the Equality Act 2010 and whether any representation could be raising issues relevant to the protected characteristics. Gender equality was considered so far as appropriate to the representations.

 

It was noted with significance that no representation was made on behalf of the police or any other responsible authority.

 

The Sub Committee heard that a number of representations had been received after the expiry of the prescribed statutory period. The Sub Committee accordingly had to determine whether those representations ought to be properly considered and taken into account. The Sub Committee accepted advice that has a discretion to accept late representations and in making such a determination it should consider the following (as well as any other relevant factor):

 

1)    How late are the representations?

2)    Is there any particular reason for their lateness?

3)    Would their admission create prejudice for the applicant (e.g. insufficient time to respond)?

4)    To what extent do the late representations add anything significant to the strength of the objection argument?

 

It was noted that the Guidance indicates that the discretion may be exercised where the applicant is given the opportunity to deal with objections (paragraph 3.26).

 

The Sub Committee heard from the Applicant on the issue in particular stating:

 

-       that the Applicant had been served with the late objections in advance of the hearing, but did not wish to adjourn the proceedings today in the event that the objections were admitted;

 

-       But that there was nothing in the content of these late objections which had not already been stated in the objections received on time;

 

-       And that the consultation period expired in March and these objections had been made extremely late.

 

The Sub Committee agreed to hear a summary outline of the late objections from the Licensing Manager, this summary included the suitability of the area, safety issues, allegations of criminal activities and the sexual objectification of women. 

 

Having heard the summary and considered the Applicant's representations, the sub-committee determined not to accept and consider the late representations. 

 

Having taken account of all of the above, and for the reasons which follow, the Sub  ...  view the full decision text for item 28.

Minutes:

Introductions were made - Mr Ojla, the applicant, was present and represented by his solicitor Mr Wallsgrove. 

Before commencing Mrs Blair as legal adviser to the sub committee checked that the panel members had seen or discussed a recent newspaper article; neither Councillor Mason nor Councillor Fazackarley had read the article.  Councillor Udy had read it but had not discussed it and did not remember its contents and would come to a decision based on the merits of the case as presented.

Mrs Blair reported that there had been a number of late objections since the article (in the week prior to this meeting) and referred to case law allowing discretion to consider those received outside of the prescribed time limits (Belfast case[1]),  should the panel wish to look at these with the applicant also being given time to consider. The Licensing Manager offered to give a summary of the late objections, if required.  It was reported that the statutory 28 days for representation had ended on 9th March 2019.

The panel agreed to receive an oral outline summary from the Licensing Manager Mrs Humphreys and confirmed that they had not seen the actual late representations but that these had been shared (anonymised) with the applicant whose solicitor confirmed they would not need an adjournment and Mr Wallsgrove did not believe they contained any new information but were very late, prompted by the newspaper article.

The Licensing Manager summarised the grounds covered in the late objections:

  • Reference was made to the suitability of the area
  • Exposure to young people and impact on families
  • Safety
  • The venue had not been in operation
  • The Council's policy of nil sex establishments
  • This was in a residential area
  • Allegations of prostitution, drug use and pornography
  • Sexual objectification of women

 

The sub committee members all agreed that these grounds were already covered in the earlier representations that formed part of the report and that these new ones had been submitted very late, therefore they did not wish to read the late objections in full.   This meant that there would not be a deputation made by one of the late objectors who was present at the hearing as her objection had not been received in time.

The Licensing Manager then presented her report, and she explained that this is an annual application for renewal.  There had been no representations from other council departments.  The 5 objectors (appendix F) had the right to remain anonymous but she could confirm that these are from residents in close proximity.  Mrs Humphreys went through the possible grounds for refusal (see paragraph 9); the statutory grounds did not apply for this application and for the discretionary grounds (see paragraph 10) there was no evidence for the first 2 grounds for refusal, and this was for an existing SEV premises so the question of the character of the locality was most relevant for the panel's considerations.

The panel asked to see an internal plan showing the layout  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

Exclusion of Press and Public

RECOMMENDED that the following motion be adopted

 

"Under the provisions of Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) Act 1985, the press and public be excluded for the consideration of the following item on the grounds that the report contains information defined as exempt in Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972."

 

Agenda item and paragraph numbers:

 

Item 5 - Licensing Act 2003 -  Consideration of a Personal Licence

 

Under the following exemption paragraph numbers:

 

1. Information relating to an individual

2. Information that is likely to reveal the identity of an individual

3. Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular

person (including the authority holding that information).

 

(Members are asked to hand in their confidential papers to the Democratic

Services Officer at the end of the meeting.)

 

Minutes:

The legal adviser updated the motion for the exclusion of press and public.

 

RESOLVED that the press and public be excluded from the hearing in accordance with Regulation 14(2) of the Licensing Act 2003 (Hearings) Regulations 2005 and following consideration of the public interest.  In order to allow a meaningful determination it is noted that the papers have not be published on this item on the grounds that the report contains information that otherwise may be defined as exempt in Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972:

 

Item - Licensing Act 2003 - Consideration of a Personal Licence

 

Under the following exemption paragraph numbers:

1.    Information relating to an individual

2.    Information that is likely to reveal the identity of an individual

3.    Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information).

30.

Licensing Act 2003 - Consideration of Personal Licence

The exempt report by the Licensing Manager is for consideration by the sub-committee of whether or not to suspend or revoke a personal licence.

Decision:

Following the exclusion of press and public the personal licence matter was held in exempt session and the personal licence under consideration was revoked.

Minutes:

Following the exclusion of press and public the personal licence matter was held in exempt session and the personal licence under consideration was revoked.