Winelodge bar in Oulton Broad closes with ‘immediate effect’

The Winelodge venue in Oulton Broad. Picture: Nick Butcher.

The Winelodge venue in Oulton Broad. Picture: Nick Butcher. - Credit: Archant © 2013

Owners of the Winelodge bar and Escape nightclub in Oulton Broad have confirmed the venues will be closed with 'immediate effect'.

A statement on the Escape Club-Lounge Facebook page read: 'Winelodge Bars and Escape Club-Lounge would like to inform all our customers we have closed with immediate effect.

'It is with great sadness and extreme disappointment we have to share this news.

'We would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who joined us for our popular events.

'It's been a pleasure providing a safe environment for you all to enjoy a great night out, and we had an amazing time partying with you all.

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'Special thanks to our fantastic staff and DJ for all their hard work and enthusiasm for making these events happen!

'We are truly overwhelmed at the level of support we have received and really do appreciate it.'

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Recently, the nightclub had its request to sell alcohol until 2am turned down after nearby residents raised concerns about anti-social behaviour.

Hotel owner Tony Burlingham had also applied to keep Winelodge, in Bridge Road, Oulton Broad, open to the public until 2.30am after taking the venue in December last year.

But Waveney District Council's licensing sub-committee refused the application, saying: 'Later opening hours increase the risk of disorder and public nuisance and therefore it was agreed that licensable activities should terminate at 12.30am, with the premises closing to the public at 1am.'

Responding to the decision, the statement on the Escape Club-Lounge page added: 'As many of you are aware, our late licence application was rejected by Waveney District Council Licensing Committee for reasons we feel were totally unjustified and unfair.

'Since re-opening on a temporary events licence from New Years Eve, we have received no police reports or arrests and were hopeful the full licence would be granted,' the statement claimed.

Penny Forrest, who owns Mill House, opposite Winelodge, said: 'I am of course sad when any fellow businessman closes their business but residents cannot help but be extremely relieved.

'It has always been a problem for us, before Mr Burlingham was owner, so it is nothing personal.

'He was applying for a licence for over 700 people, which is too high a number, of people, to be spilling out on to a residential street at two or three in the morning, especially with the anti social disturbances we have experienced.

'I hope when it opens again it will be an enterprise which becomes a community asset.'

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