Licence of Captain’s Table pub in Wells is being ‘reviewed’

The Captain's Table in Wells, whose licence is being reviewed.

The Captain's Table in Wells, whose licence is being reviewed. - Credit: Archant

A pub could be banned from playing live music until sound-proofing has been installed.

The Captain's Table in Wells could also be prevented from playing amplified music after 11pm and be made to employ door staff to control anti-social behaviour.

North Norfolk councillors meet next week to consider a dossier of complaints from people living around the venue, on Freeman Street. They include loud music, shouting, swearing and bottles being smashed in the road. One neighbour writes: 'Particularly during the summer months, I have experienced excessive noise late into the evening from bands playing at the Captain's Table and have witnessed numerous examples of anti-social behaviour from late-night drinkers.

'These included instances of intoxicated youths screaming, shouting and fighting, often into the early hours of the morning, glasses and bottles being smashed and people urinating in the street.'

Another adds: 'During their hours of normal business, I have no problems with the above premises. However, when they have a live band, all hell is let loose.'

A letter from Norfolk police's licensing team says: 'The police have received a large number of calls from members of the public complaining about noise and rowdy behaviour emanating from the premises over the last few months.'

A noise abatement notice was served on the Captain's Table by the council in August. Officials earlier witnessed 'highly intrusive' noise levels inside a nearby property on three occasions. They also describe 'significant anti-social behaviour', adding: 'This included a group of young men and women shouting, screaming and singing periodically throughout the night, patrons urinating down an alleyway opposite and against the front of the venue and wrestling moves being carried out in the beer garden and on top of picnic benches.

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'A patron from the Captain's table was seen running out of the venue and jumping onto the front of a stationary vehicle, which proceeded to accelerate at speed down freeman Street before quickly turning into Stearmans Yard car park while the patron held onto both sides of the windscreen.'

The council dossier contains one letter written in support of the pub. It says: 'As a resident of Freeman Street and a patron of the Captain's Table, I was very disappointed to see the premises licence is now under review.

'The present owner and the manager have spent a lot of time and money to improve the premises and make it popular again. As with any popular public house, there is inevitably some noise.

'However, the noise levels from the Quay, the playing field, the Buttlands and other venues are much greater. It seems unfair that a few people who have chosen to live near existing licensed premises can potentially destroy the livelihood and enjoyment of many.

'The fact is the town needs popular venues for locals and holiday makers to enjoy. If these places are denied their licences the town will not attract the tourism it needs, resulting in unemployment, boarded up buildings and a general downward spiral of the local economy.'

North Norfolk's licensing and appeals committee meet to review the pub's licence on Monday. A report to councillors says: 'After a long period of residents living harmoniously alongside the venue (some for two decades) the Captain's Table has recently caused significant concern in the area and resulted in noise and anti-social behaviour complaints from a number of inhabitants living nearby.'

Councillors have been recommended to order that no live or recorded amplified music be played until sound proofing work has been carried out, prohibit amplified music between 11pm and 8am and order door staff to be present when live and amplified music is being played.

Enterprise Inns, which owns the freehold of the pub, said it had 'no operation responsibility' for the pub, which was leased out to Colonial and Scottish Inns Ltd.

Council papers say Michael Higginson is the 'designated premises supervisor' on behalf of Colonial and Scottish Inns.

Mr Higginson said complaints began after a dispute over a path between the pub and Glebe Road. He added: 'Some of the complaints about some of the rowdies outside the pub have been sorted.'

Mr Higginson said he had met with the council and agreed to address its concerns. He added he could not comment on what officials said they had witnessed, because he wasn't present.