New licensing powers set to control spread of Norwich drinking hotspots

Celebrating NewYears 2015 in Norwich, too many drinks of alcohol and this guy finds himself arrested

Celebrating NewYears 2015 in Norwich, too many drinks of alcohol and this guy finds himself arrested after an altercation of fighting on Prince of Wales Road in Norwich. - Credit: Archant

New powers look set to be put into place which would help manage alcohol-fuelled crimes in Norwich.

Map showing where tighter controls will be put in place to open new establishments (Red line)

Map showing where tighter controls will be put in place to open new establishments (Red line) - Credit: Archant

A suggested change in licensing policies could prevent new bars and clubs opening in already saturated areas of drinking establishments in Norwich.

Known as the cumulative impact policy, it will give councillors a stronger case to turn down a licensing application on the basis that it will add to current issues of crime or disorder.

At Norwich City Hall yesterday, the licensing committee unanimously voted in favour of bringing in the policy, which would also allow them to block already open premises from extending their opening hours.

The matter will be discussed at a full council meeting on a later date to find out whether the proposal is given the green light.


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Councillor Ben Price, of the Green Party, said: 'We very much welcome this policy coming forward.

'It will help deal with the issues of late-night violence and alcohol related anti-social behaviour - this resolution is long overdue.'

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The licensing policy would cover a wide area of the city centre, including the Riverside and Prince of Wales Road - the heart of Norwich's late night drinking zone.

Those two areas would be covered by a late night activity zone where more officers will be present.

In December 2014, Norfolk Constabulary produced a report to the licensing committee detailing their evidence of the problems they have to face when policing Norwich's clubbing district.

A representative of Norfolk Constabulary's licensing team said: 'This would prevent any further licensed premises of a similar nature from opening in a place already saturated with pubs, clubs and late night premises.

'If the issue is passed, then on a yearly basis we will have to review the policy and see where it is working and where it is not.'

Gail Harris, cabinet member for customer services, of Labour, said: 'As I have said many times the nigh-time economy is part of our vibrant city, but it has to be balanced with the needs and safety of the community.'

What do you think of the proposals? Email Kieran.Lynch@archant.co.uk

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