Agenda and minutes
Tuesday, 20 July 2010 7:00 pm
Venue: Salon - York House. View directions
Contact: Gary Lelliott, 020 8891 7275, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Liz Jaeger and Councillor Ben Khosa.
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Members are asked to declare any interests in matters for consideration at the meeting.
Councillor Chappell declared a prejudicial interest in item 4 of the agenda by virtue of her involvement in campaigns against the only establishment in the borough to offer nude table/lap dancing entertainment.
To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 29 March 2010 – attached.
RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 29 March 2010 be received and approved, and the Chairman be authorised to sign them.
Regulations in the Policing and Crime Act 2009 enable local authorities to adopt new powers under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 to control lap/table dancing type activities under a new classification of ‘sexual entertainment venue’. This report outlines the background to the new legislation the options available and the consequences of adopting or not adopting the legislation.
Report of the Head of Licensing attached.
Representations were received, which have been summarised below:
Mrs Rosemary Jarvis – representing Twickenham Christian Concern
Twickenham Christian Concern supported the adoption of the new legislation, as it would give weight to the views of borough residents. Twickenham Christian Concern also had concerns over the ethical and moral standing of such venues and felt that they exploited women.
The annual renewal of licences was also welcomed, which would be achieved by adopting the new legislation.
Mr David Dadds – Licensing Barrister on behalf of the Piano Lounge, Twickenham
A public consultation should be carried out as proprietors of many establishments such as the Piano Lounge welcomed public involvement and worked hard to engage with the communities around them. Businesses should also be consulted as part of this work.
Mr Eimmon Cosgrove – Manager of the Piano Lounge
Mr Cosgrove supported the views expressed by David Dadds.
Mrs Susan Chappell – speaking as a resident living close to a lap dancing club
The new policy should be adopted immediately, as such places affect the lives of residents living around them. Ways in which residents’ lives were affected included people congregating outside at the early hours of the morning and parents being unable to take their children past when the venue was operating.
[Susan Chappell left the meeting at this point, as in her capacity as a Councillor, she had a prejudicial interest.]
It was reported that a widespread consultation would be time consuming and expensive. There were also certain limitations around staffing capacity as there would be the statutory licensing policy consultation taking place at the same time. Previous consultations about sex establishments had been undertaken via Area Consultation Meetings, but it was recognised that this wasn’t always effective or fully representative.
It was noted that the sexual entertainment venue consultation could be appended to the licensing policy consultation, although care would need to be taken in order to avoid the issues being mixed up.
One Councillor suggested that consultation on individual licensing applications for sex entertainment venues could work in a similar fashion to planning application consultations.
A Councillor recommended that other Councillors make members of the public aware of The Digest, a weekly council publication, which gave details of current licensing applications.
It was acknowledged that there was a possibility of legal challenge by way of judicial review if decision making was based on either inadequate or no consultation, and that the potential costs of such actions could be high. A full consultation along with that of the licensing policy was considered the best option.
It was noted that any delay in adopting this policy would result in the ‘grace period’ for existing licence holders being put forward by the same amount of time.
1. residents, businesses and other groups with an interest be consulted on the proposed adoption of the new legislation;
2. decisions on the form the consultation adopted be delegated to the Chairman of the Regulatory Committee in consultation with the Head of Licensing and the Licensing and Litigation Solicitor; and
3. the results of this consultation be brought back to the soonest possible Regulatory Committee meeting for a decision.