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Councillors object to laser tag venue selling alcohol at city car park

Rose Lane multi-storey car park.Pic: Norwich Society.

Rose Lane multi-storey car park.Pic: Norwich Society.

Norwich Society

City councillors and a local primary school are among objectors to a new laser tag venue selling alcohol at Rose Lane car park.

Next Wednesday a licensing application will come before the city council asking to open the venue, called Labyrinth, on the first floor of the car park.

The application, made by Labyrinth Norwich Limited, states the premises would operate as a “family entertainment cafe and laser tag birthday centre.”

Facilities on the entrance level include a cafe and an area for children’s entertainment with the laser tag facility occupying a mezzanine floor, spanning the full width of the 154sq/m unit.

But Labyrinth are asking for alcohol sales between 10am and 11pm every day at the site, which Green councillors have claimed it would be “entirely inappropriate” opposite the Charles Darwin primary school.

Lesley Grahame, for Thorpe Hamlet, said selling alcohol at a car park is “likely to increase” drink driving.

“Drink-related anti-social behaviour is a nuisance causing much distress in the area,” she added. “This is recognised by the imposition of a cumulative impact zone to restrict the addition of new outlets of alcohol in the area.

“Alcohol sales near schools expose children to the disinhibited behaviour of adults on the streets and in their cars, putting them at risk.”

Ben Price, for Thorpe Hamlet, said “This area of the city has many problems with street drinking and the associated anti-social behaviour the council is addressing.

“This premises is located across the road from a primary school and nursery. It is entirely inappropriate for this premises to be selling alcohol before 6pm, which is after the school has finished its care of children.”

James Goffin, on behalf of the Charles Darwin Academy, also objected.

“We would recommend tighter licensing around alcohol sales and noise to prevent disturbance to Charles Darwin Primary and Nursery, which is directly across the road from the application site,” he said.

The multi-storey car park on Rose Lane, which is run by Norwich City Council, was opened in 2016 and cost £7m to build.

It has space for 595 cars and also has space inside to be let out to businesses.

Last year the car park, with its perforated steel facade, was named the country’s best new car park in the British Parking Awards.

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