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Second city pub poised to be denied early serving on Derby Day

PUBLISHED: 06:00 26 January 2019 | UPDATED: 13:04 26 January 2019

The Steam Packet in Norwich looks set to be denied early opening on Derby Day. Picture: Antony Kelly

The Steam Packet in Norwich looks set to be denied early opening on Derby Day. Picture: Antony Kelly

© ARCHANT NORFOLK 2009

A second city centre pub looks poised to be denied in a bid to serve alcohol before the East Anglian derby.

Steam Packet landlord Hakim Skalli with a staff member. Photo: Steve AdamsSteam Packet landlord Hakim Skalli with a staff member. Photo: Steve Adams

Following the denial of the Fat Cat and Canary on Thorpe Road, city councillors will decide next week whether to grant permission for the Steam Packet to serve early on match day.

Like the Canary, the pub on Crown Road is only licensed to sell alcohol from 12 noon on Sundays, when the much-anticipated derby kicks off.

However, landlord Hakim Skalli has applied to the city council for permission to begin trading from 9.30am on derby day.

Norfolk Constabulary has been consistent in its approach though, also objecting to the Steam Packet’s application on the grounds that it would undermine the specifically-designed noon kick-off – set by a safety advisory group.

In her response, police licensing officer Michelle Bartram said that as recently as November conflict between supporters had occurred outside the pub – ahead of Norwich City’s dramatic 4-3 victory over Millwall.

She said: “At around 2.50pm on Saturday, November 10, a group off approximately 20 Millwall fans walked past the Steam Packet and there was a stand-off between both sets of fans.

“Two police officers were in the middle trying to separate the fans on numerous occasions, fans walked into the road from the pub and the Millwall fans and had to be stopped by police.

“Norwich City fans have then thrown a number of glasses and bottles from otuside the Steam Packet and the Millwall fans, narrowly missing police officers.

“With previous football-related disorder linked to the venue and the request to permit fans to consume alcohol earlier, police request that this temporary events notice is objected to as it will increase the potential for disorder and incidents.”

Last week, a sub-committee of Norwich City Council licensing team opted against allowing the Fat Cat and Canary to serve alcohol from 10am on derby day.

A sub-committee of the same team will decide the Steam Packet’s fate on Thursday this week.

The match between Norwich City and Paul Lambert’s Ipswich Town is on Sunday, February 10.

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