Author Archives: mkheng

About mkheng

Kurnia Licensing & Training Consultants deal with all aspects of the LIcensing Act 2003. We deal with all types of applications for alcohol and entertainment licences and deal with all types of hearing from committee to Judicial Review. We are a Grade 1 BIIAB accredited training center delivering the suite of BIIAB qualifications.

East Lindsey District Council set to ban bottles being sold across the district.

At a recent review hearing under the Licensing Act 2003 held at the Council Offices of ELDC, 16 June 2017, in a matter relating to an assault on an individual where it is suspected a glass was used, the Chairman of the Licensing Act 2003 Committee, councillor Robert J. Palmer, who was the chair of the Licensing Sub Committee for the meeting imposed a condition, agreed by the sub committee, on the premises licence for the Marine Boathouse Skegness in that all drinks shall be served in plastic, paper or toughened glass, except for teas, coffees, or other similar drinks which can be served in porcelain, china or other similar materials, vessels, at any other time.

Councillor Palmer then went on to say;

‘The conditions that we’ve laid on reference glasses, or the drinking vessels, won’t just happen in your establishment, I shall be talking to Mr Twiddy, and the police, and we will try and make that an all through Skegness, and through the area, so that nobody has dangerous glasses. The incident could have happen at 3 o’clock in the afternoon, it could have happened any time, so in future I am going to try and get all premises, will have this type of glass.’

When asked by Kurnia Licensing Consultants if this meant mean that no bottles, unless they are made from toughened glass or plastic may be served either over the bar or at a table (i.e a bottle of wine cannot be served to a table in a restaurant), principal licencing officer, of the ELDC licensing section confirmed, in an email to Kurnia Licensing Consultants, that the intention was ‘no glass bottles may be served either over the bar or at a table’.

This clearly could have huge consequences on many businesses and not limited to bars and clubs but also restaurants.

Michael Kheng of Kurnia Licensing Consultants said;

‘We cannot see why ELDC would not want bottles of wine to be sold at tables in restaurants or children to have pop and the like served in a bottle with a stray. We feel the council have over reacted in this matter and to say that the council will attempt to make this a standard policy not only across Skegness but though out the area is crazy. It could have huge implications on many responsible businesses as well as send out a message to thousands of visitors to Skegness and the district that East Lindsey is a dangerous place to visit. We shall be fighting on behalf of our clients and the trade to ensure this does not become the standard.’

‘What was said is contrary to the councils Statement of Licensing Policy that states at 5.5, regarding the use of toughened or plastic drinking glasses, that states, the Licensing Authority believes that a risk-based, rather than blanket, approach to requiring licensed premises to use safer alternatives is the best way to tackle the problem of glass-related injuries.’

‘It also goes against the Home Office S182 Guidance that clearly states at 10.8;

The licensing authority may not impose any conditions unless its discretion has been exercised following receipt of relevant representations and it is satisfied as a result of a hearing (unless all parties agree a hearing is not necessary) that it is appropriate to impose conditions to promote one or more of the four licensing objectives. In order to promote the crime prevention licensing objective conditions may be included that are aimed at preventing illegal working in licensed premises. This provision also applies to minor variations.’

‘Restaurants must be able to sell bottles of wine to the table and children able to have bottle of pop as well as customers able to have beer by the bottle. At the end of the day the incident involved a glass and not a bottle so we see no reason why the council are seeking a blanket ban on bottles. After 12 years of the Licensing Act 2003 being in place we are still seeing conditions are wrong. What authorities should be doing is looking at the consequences of a condition. In this case by stating all drinks shall be served in plastic, paper or toughened glass, expect for tea and coffee means nothing else can be used. The old fashioned pewter or steel tankard for example cannot be used as it is not paper, plastic or toughened glass. We have always encouraged and suggested what should not be used rather than what should be used with these types of conditions.’


A Saturday Evening on Shift with Lincolnshire Police

After 30 years in the pub & club trade and 12 years as a specialist licensing consultant, I was interested to spend an evening with Lincolnshire Police to see and experience some of the effects of alcohol in the evening economy. I shared a night shift on a Saturday night in June with an officer on patrol in the city of Lincoln as an observer.

My brief was to arrive at the West Parade Police Station at 2130hrs to be introduced to PC Joe Clear who I joined for the evening for his shift.

The first job was certainly unexpected. A visit to Lincoln County Hospital to observe the results of a previous incident with a deceased person. Talk about being thrown in at the deep end! Almost two hours later, we left the hospital. I have always had a lot of respect for hospital staff and left with more than ever for the hard working, dedicated nurses and their colleagues who do a great job and such long shifts.
After checking a property, following a call complaining about a disturbance, we went to the custody suite to look at how detained people are processed and I was invited to look at the very basic cells. Not really a place you would want to spend the night.

Now, in the early hours of the morning we had a well earned coffee break, surprisingly the only coffee break of the evening! I thought that officers might have had more coffee breaks during their long and demanding shifts. We did not have time to relax and enjoy it however as a call soon came in to attend a disturbance at a previously known address. 

Within minutes we arrived at the address and all appeared to be quiet. Soon after, two more police cars arrived and a total of four officers were on then on the scene. All seemed to be in order and the feeling was that it was a malicious call. Two hours of officer’s time was wasted on a busy Saturday evening. This would be one of a few similar calls we dealt with during the evening. It made me realise how much valuable police time is probably, unnecessarily wasted.

Some interesting observations; Whilst driving around looking for a suspect it was very hard looking down the side streets without the street lights being switched on. I was impressed with how the taxi companies and taxi marshalls appeared to be dealing with moving the public out of the city centre. Street Pastors were helping out many vulnerable people.

On the subject of vulnerable people, I was shocked with the number of females I saw walking around the city barefoot! I suspect that their high heels had got too much for them and it was easier for them to take their shoes off! They abviously were not thinking about any broken glass that might be on the pavement let alone whatever else may be deposited there.

The recently introduced electronic notebooks appear to be a good tool with officers only having to make notes once, then the file is updated. A great deal of time must have been wasted in the past handwriting notes and then typing them up.

The conduct, attitude and professionalism of Joe, and his colleagues I met on the night was exceptional. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the evening but finished the shift with huge respect for the police on the ground after seeing what they have to deal with. Joe told me that the shift was a quiet one. I thought it was fairly manic so cannot imagine what a busy night would be like.
Although the police have response times to meet, it is clear that no matter how many officers there may be on duty, if there’s an incident occurring, or someone has made a malicious call, these times are going to be hard to meet.

We spent most of the evening until 0400hrs dashing from one side of the city to the other dealing with various incidents and my six and a half hours passed in a flash. A pleasure to have been able to join the police for the evening and have a first hand experience of what officers have to deal with.

Humberside Police Apologise in Public Hearing for Wasting Peoples Time

Humberside Police Apologise in Public Hearing for Wasting Peoples Time

In an extraordinary turn of events in a hearing in Grimsby, NE Lincolnshire today (Friday 3 May 2013) to determine an extension of one hour to permit a well known respectable Cleethorpes night club to operate until 5am instead of 4am on the May Day and Whit Bank Holiday weekends Humberside Police withdrew their objections to a temporary event notice hours before the hearing following the premises agreeing to not permit new customers into the venue after 4am.

Humberside Police had previously said they would object to any extensions beyond 4am in Cleethorpes and Grimsby and did not want to discuss the matter. Litehouse on Sea Road Cleethorpes had previously benefited from extended hours over the Easter Bank Holiday weekend to 5am and were surprised when the police objected to the May Bank Holiday extensions, especially as the premises operate relatively trouble free.

Michael Kheng of Kurnia Licensing Consultants, acting for Litehouse Cleethorpes, expressed his disappointment and concern that the police had waited until the 11th hour to withdraw their objection as the matter still had to go before a licensing subcommittee of North East Lincolnshire Council. He informed the panel that the total cost of the hearing for all parties would be more than the premises would actual take over the bar in the extra hour.


Chairman of the subcommittee, Councillor S Beasant said when delivering the sub committees decision;

The Sub Committee noted that agreement had been reached, but that it had been at too late a stage for the police objection to be withdrawn.

They were minded to endorse the consensus reached over night, however were concerned that this agreement was reached at the eleventh hour and if resolved earlier could have saved the relevant authorities valuable time and expense’

Humberside Police have been criticized in a number of NE Lincs hearings recently for their lack of co-operation and discussion with premises.

Assistant force solicitor for Humberside Police Daniel Guiver told the hearing that Humberside Police has revised their policy and in future would discuss matters with premises. He apologised for the 11th hour agreement and on behalf of Humberside Police for wasting peoples time.

A number of licensees in Grimsby and Cleethorpes have expressed their disappointment in Humberside Police over recent times and one multiple operator said this move was ‘too little too late’ after costing their company thousands of pounds in legal fees.

Pubwatch. Are you in or are you alone?

Pubwatch. Are you in or are you alone?

I am pleased to announce that I have recently been asked by National Pubwatch to be their Regional Representative for the East Midlands, a position that I have proudly accepted.

Over the years I have assisted in setting up many Pubwatch schemes and have chaired more schemes than I can remember. It goes without saying therefore that I firmly believe in Pubwatch and all the benefits Pubwatch has to offer and look forward to this voluntary role to help the industry.

I wonder though how many pubs are not part of a Pubwatch scheme. Are you a member of a scheme? If not why not?

A Pubwatch scheme is run by licensees for licensees to assist in reducing crime and disorder in your area. It’s not just about banning people though. It can be much more and how much more depends on what you and your fellow licensees want from your Pubwatch scheme. Some Pubwatches invite guest speakers, some discuss local issues, some fundraise. There’s no set criteria. The aim of launching a scheme is to reduce alcohol related crime and disorder in an area by building a positive relationship between the licensed trade, local authority and the police.

Since I first got involved in a Pubwatch scheme things have changed greatly. What started as a simple list of names now sees Pubwatches online and schemes joined to neighbouring Pubwatches to try and prevent trouble makers migrating. Pubwatch Online is also now available via a mobile phone so you can access your schemes account wherever you are.

National Pubwatch is a voluntary organisation set up to support existing pubwatches and encourage the creation of new pubwatch schemes with the aim of achieving a safer social drinking environment in all licensed premises throughout the UK. They provide assistance and guidance both for people seeking to set up a new scheme and to existing schemes.

I am looking forward to assisting Pubwatches in the East Midlands in my role as the regional representative. If you are based in the East Midlands I would be only too happy to talk to you. If you are based anywhere else contact National Pubwatch for details of your regional representative.

National Pubwatch is a recognised scheme supported by the Home Office. Visit for further details about National Pubwatch.

Freeze Beer Duty To Save 5,000 Over Jobs, 10,000 by 2014/15 (from the BBPA)

Monday, 4th March 2013

Budget 2013 – new report makes compelling case for beer duty freeze

•           Beer duty freeze would raise Government revenues overall

•           10,000 jobs protected up to 2015, mostly in pubs

•           Action needed now, says BBPA Chief Executive

A clear and compelling case has been made for a freeze in the tax on beer, in a new report published today by a leading industry trade body. In ‘Beer, Pubs & the Budget 2013’, the British Beer & Pub Association says that ending the Government’s controversial and unpopular beer duty ‘escalator’ in the March Budget would save thousands of jobs – without ANY overall loss of revenue to the Treasury.

If the Government goes ahead with plans to raise the tax on beer by five per cent in the Budget, this will bring the rise in Beer Tax to a staggering 50 per cent over the past five years. The policy is having a damaging effect on jobs in Britain’s pubs, says the BBPA, where 70 per cent of drinks’ sales are beer – the vast majority brewed here in Britain.  Research in the report says that if beer duty were frozen in the Budget, this would save over 5,000 jobs, increasing to nearly 10,000 by 2014/15 – mostly jobs for younger people in pubs.

The report also finds that far from raising more in taxes, the policy is failing to bring in additional revenues. Leading researchers Oxford Economics estimate that despite a slight drop in beer duty revenues, a tax freeze would raise an additional £5 million in revenue across the whole tax base, mainly through a significant boost to employment tax revenues, and avoiding social security payments from reduced employment in pubs.  In contrast, even the Treasury’s own current forecasts show that less will be raised from beer duty in 2013/14 compared with the previous year – yet further tax hikes are planned.

The report shows that beer taxes in Britain have now reached unprecedented levels. Beer Tax is higher than in any other EU country bar Finland, and is now 13 times higher than in Germany. British Brewers now pay an astonishing 50 per cent of their turnover in beer duty, damaging growth and investment in this key, British-made product.  UK beer drinkers now pay 40 per cent of the beer tax across the EU, but only consume 13% of its beer.

BBPA Chief Executive, Brigid Simmonds comments:

“Far from hitting the bottom line, a duty freeze would raise revenues, protect thousands of jobs, allow us to create yet more jobs and help one of our greatest national assets – our network of much-loved British pubs, still struggling in difficult economic times. I hope this compelling analysis will persuade the Government that now is the time for change.”


For further information please contact:

David Wilson: Public Affairs Director Tel: 020 7627 9151

Neil Williams, Head of Media Tel: (020) 7627 9156 / 07974 249 779

Gareth Barrett, Public Affairs Officer Tel: (020) 7627 9154

Note to editors:

Other positive policies for beer and pubs in the report:

  • Seriously consider the opportunity of reducing VAT for food and drink in the hospitality sector which could generate hundreds of thousands of new jobs over the next few years
  • No new costly and disproportionate regulation such as fiscal marks or supply chain legislation
  • Consider reducing Machines Games Duty to 15 per cent to more accurately reflect the cost of the new regime to the pub trade
  • Extend Small Business Rate Relief to the end of the current Parliament [The BBPA also supports the reintroduction of ‘Section 20c’ to allow pubs reductions in their business rates if their turnover is down].

Can England and Wales Learn From NSW, Australia?

Can England and Wales Learn From NSW, Australia?

After discussing alcohol issues with my brother and sister in law, who have lived in Sydney for a number of years, I decided to investigate the NSW model further during my recent trip to Australia.

The sale of alcohol in NSW is regulated by the NSW Liquor Act 2007. The first thing to be of interest about the Act is that RSA (Responsible Service of Alcohol) training is mandatory for everyone in NSW involved in the sale and supply of alcohol (or liquor as the NSW Act calls it) to the public. This includes licensees, club secretaries, serving staff and security staff working at licensed venues. There are no exemptions from undertaking the course. Simply put if you have not completed the RSA course, and passed the assessments, you cannot sell or supply alcohol.

To learn about the RSA more thoroughly I booked on a day course to see what the training involved and how it differed from our personal licence holders course here in England. The course is more akin to the BIIAB ARAR focusing on responsible retailing and underage sales and the sale of alcohol to drunks as well as the legal framework and effects of alcohol. The course costs approximately £70.00. We had 4 assessments throughout the day. To pass, candidates must score 100% although unlike our system the assessments are all open book. Our personal licence holders course focuses too much on legal aspects of the Act which most candidates do not need to know, and will never use. In my mind mandatory accredited training is a step forward. It means it is up to the individual to get trained and not the employers responsibility to train them as without the RSA you simply cannot work.

Once I had passed the RSA, (I am pleased to say I did pass), the next stage is to apply for your photo competency card as the certificate issued by the training centre is only valid for 3 months. In NSW all applications for the competency card are dealt with by participating Australian Post outlets. You make an appointment online; mine was made for 2 days after the course. At your appointment you need to take your certificate and required ID. The Post outlet then checks your details and ID, takes a photograph and captures your signature digitally. There is no fee to pay as this is included within the RSA course. The whole process took no longer than 10 minutes and that is it. You then wait for approximately 3 weeks for the card to be sent to you. Once issued the competency card is valid for 5 years.

During the RSA course I learned that the fixed penalty issued to person who serves a minor is $1,100 AUD (approx £700) in comparison with our £80, or a maximum fine of $11,000 AUD or 12 months imprisonment if dealt with by the court system. This struck me as a significant deterrent and something England and Wales should look at. It does not matter how much training a company puts in place, at the end of the day the company are relying upon the actions of a person, who can make a mistake. I have often seen failed test purchases in the most responsible companies, mine included. If the server first had to have a qualification and then knew that a failed test purchase or a sale of alcohol to a minor carried a substantial fixed penalty, I am sure all servers would always be on their guard. I must stress I am not saying companies should stop training. Similar penalties are also in place in NSW for persons who purchase alcohol on behalf of minors.

As for minors, if they purchase or attempt to purchase alcohol they face a fixed penalty of $220 AUD (£140) of a maximum fine of $2,200 AUD (£1,400). In England and Wales the majority of under 18’s who purchase or attempt to purchase alcohol simply are sent on their way with little more than a verbal slap on their wrists. If under 18’s faced a fixed penalty of £140 or more I am sure this would help reduce the number of under 18’s who attempt to purchase alcohol in England and Wales.

The NSW law for drivers licences and P-plates also seem sensible. P-plates are issued to drivers for a probationary period after passing their driving test. Also minors caught using fake IDs can be required to spend an extra 6 months on their P-plates once they obtain a provisional driver licence.  This rule was introduced to discourage young people from engaging in illegal activity that can place themselves, their friends and the community at risk.  It applies to all people 14 years and older, regardless of whether they have a driver licence at the time of the offence. If a person is already on a P-plate, the extra six months will be added on straight away. If the person holds a learner licence, or has not obtained any form of driver licence, the extra six months will be added when the person is issued with a provisional licence.

The same penalties to underage sales also apply in regards to offences around drunkenness. Unlike our Licensing Act 2003 the NWS Act has a clear definition of the meaning of intoxicated and part of the RSA focuses on intoxication, its meaning and the noticeable signs of intoxication. Unfortunately the Licensing Act 2003 does not define what drunk is and little training is done in respect of this topic.

The NSW Act also assists licensees when people are asked to leave licensed premises or are refused entry. If the person who has been asked to leave, or refused entry, does not leave the vicinity of the premises, vicinity defined as ‘any place less than 50 meters from any point on the boundary of the premises’, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $550 AUD (£350) or a maximum fine of $5,500 AUD (£3,500). The provisions also prohibit the person from re-entering, or attempting to re-enter, the premises for 24 hours or re-entering the vicinity of the premises within 6 hours. The law in England and Wales does little to assist licensees in this area. Too often licensees in England and Wales are faced with people refusing to leave the outside of the premises when refused entry which often can lead to a conflict situation.

One of my biggest surprises with the sale of alcohol in NSW was that the NSW Act restricts the granting of packaged liquor licences (off licences). In the norm supermarkets and convenience stores and takeaways cannot sell alcohol. It struck me that alcohol is simply too freely available in England and Wales and as such the price has been driven down to the ridiculously low prices we see today. Should we start looking at restricting the sale of alcohol in the off trade? Restricting the sale and increasing the price would, in my opinion, help in the reduction of cases of alcohol abuse. As we have seen with the ban on smoking in public places, smoking in the country has reduced and I would guess smoking related illness may have also dropped. In NSW supermarkets, convenience stores and takeaways survive without the need to sell alcohol so I am sure the same businesses in England and Wales could do also. The cheap alcohol that is available in supermarkets only encourages binge drinking and pre loading which in turn is the cause of much antisocial behaviour we see in our town and city centres.

Something that I picked up, not related to the NSW Act, was random breath testing for drivers. The police do not wait to see you swerving or look for a light not working, instead they set up random road blocks and pull over a fixed number of cars at a time. Turn around to avoid this and the police go after you. Drivers in the road block are all breath tested and if clear sent on their way.

I was extremely impressed during my 3 week stay in Sydney with my experiences in licensed premises. Having my 18 year son with me enabled me to see firsthand how efficient staff were in asking for ID. Even when I was ordering, my son was asked to produce ID. There seemed to be a more responsible approach from businesses and consumers around alcohol. Another surprise was that when we went to watch Sydney FC play football alcohol was permitted in stands. Having over 30 years experience in licensed retail I have seen many changes both in legislation and the drinking culture in England.

If the Home Office and government looked at the NSW model and adopted some of their practices I am sure some of our alcohol related issues would be addressed. In addition to the above the NSW Liquor Act 2007 contains many other provisions that could be adopted in England and Wales. If the government are serious about tackling alcohol related crime and disorder on our High Streets the NSW Act would be an ideal piece of legislation to look at and adopt some of the principles within the Act.

To summarise what I think they do right in NSW and what the Home Office and Government should seriously look at for England and Wales:

  • Mandatory accredited training for anyone involved in the sale and supply of alcohol. Remember the days when the SIA was introduced for door supervisors? The government recognised mandatory training and registration of door supervisors so why not for people who sell and serve alcohol? We currently have personal licence holders but what does his actually do? You do not have to have a personal licence holder on site at each premises. If a person loses thier personal licence it does not prevent them from selling alcohol. If someone has a string of convictions, and therefore may not be granted a personal licence, they can still sell alcohol (so long as a personal licene holder gives them permission). There is nothing to prevent one personal licence holder authorising 100 or more people to sell alcohol. Is that right?
  • Increasing the amount of a fixed penalty notice for selling to a person under 18. £80 is too low, if increased substantially people who sell alcohol would take more care with their decisions.
  • Increase the amount of a fixed penalty to under 18’s who purchase or attempt to purchase alcohol and ensure such penalties are enforced. If the under 18’s were targeted more then there would be a reduction in the attempts to purchase alcohol. Whilst forever the under 18’s get away with committing the crime the more under 18’s will try. Start to penalise the under 18’s and there will be a reduction in the attempts to purchase alcohol.
  • Penalties for person who fail to leave a premises or the vicinity of a premises and penalties if they try to re-enter.
  • Restrict where alcohol can be sold in the off trade. Alcohol is available to freely in the off trade and as such the price has dropped to an unrealistically low price. If the government are serious about reducing the amount of alcohol being consumed, and the associated problems relating to health, then the availability of alcohol needs to be restricted. By reducing where alcohol can be purchased in the off trade, and therefore consumed unsupervised, the government could address this problem.
  • Random road block breath testing.

The above was sent to all Police and Crime Commissioners, selected MPs and the Home Office Alcohol Unit  ahead of the article release with a letter containing the following:

We are aware that as a PCC [MP] you have prioritised alcohol issues in your town and city centres and we feel that if some of the measures that are in place in NSW were to be introduced into England and Wales then for once the issues would be seriously tackled and those that are the root of some of the problems would be addressed and held to account.

Our industry (the on trade being pubs and clubs) is too often targeted for extra revenue and head line grabbing stories. The on trade however seem to be ignored. Our view is that most of the problems involving alcohol stem from alcohol that is sold in the off trade, an uncontrolled environment, that is sold at extremely low prices. We support the introduction of a minimum price but even the current proposals of 45p per unit of alcohol go nowhere close to addressing the problem of cheap alcohol in the off trade as duty, vat and production costs need to be taken into account. The reality is that most of the alcohol that is sold cheaply, and purchased by those who are the root of the problems, is already sold at around 45p a unit so the current proposal will have little effect in our minds.

 The on trade are experiencing ever decreasing sales with increasing costs. The industry cannot afford any additional taxes, whether direct or indirect. The result will simply be businesses closing and loss of jobs.

 We ask that you take a look at the NSW model and if you agree that the measures would address some of the alcohol related issues use your position as a PCC [MP] to pass the message to the Home Office and Parliament to have the matter discussed.

 If you wish to discuss any points within the article please feel free to contact Michael Kheng directly by email, telephone or in person.

Michael Kheng CBii – Director, Kurnia Licensing Consultants Limited


Cleethorpes nightclub commended for ‘commitment to public safety’ despite rise in violent crime at venue

From The Grimsby Evening Telegraph 31 January 2013

A CLEETHORPES nightclub has been commended for its “commitment to public safety” despite an upsurge in violent crime at and around the venue.

According to Humberside Police, at least seven serious assaults took place at Hype, on Market Street, between November 1 and the beginning of December last year.

Sgt Caroline Cameron said the incidents had apparently been fuelled by the “consumption of excess alcohol, poor management of the venue and inadequate provision of door staff.”

However, North East Lincolnshire Council’s licensing sub-committee yesterday decided to impose just three new conditions on the premises, rejecting five others requested by the police.

The new conditions are:

A log book of incidents is kept at the premises.

All door staff keep in constant communication via a two-way radio after 9pm on Fridays, Saturdays and bank holidays.

All staff undergo training on preventing people in drink obtaining alcohol every six months.

Daniel Guiver, representing Humberside Police, told the hearing that the venue’s designated premises supervisor (DPS) Yaz Abu-Hassan had withdrawn a proposed license variation, containing the eight conditions, in December.

Sgt Cameron said that the trouble had “tailed off” since then, but added that an increased police presence outside the venue had acted as a deterrent.

Michael Kheng, speaking on behalf of Mr Abu-Hassan, said his client had been “forced into agreeing to six conditions” during a meeting with police – only to change his mind after seeking advice from licensing consultant Mr Kheng. The conditions included the supervision of outside smoking areas, attendance at Pub Watch meetings, and the adoption of a drugs policy.

Mr Kheng said that a request to discuss the conditions in more detail was refused by police.

He added that most of the incidents detailed by police happened outside the premises, including one when the venue was closed, and that incidents inside the nightclub were dealt with quickly by doorstaff.

He said: “What more could the premises have done? They have always co-operated with the police and given them CCTV footage.”

Announcing the committee’s decision, Councillor Ray Oxby said Hype had a “good track record of co-operation” and “commitment to public safety.”

He added: “Generally speaking, we feel that the venue has the procedures and systems in place and that the extra conditions being asked were not necessary.”

Speaking after the hearing, Mr Kheng said: “We are pleased that the committee has recognised that Hype is a well-run venue.

“However, we are disappointed that Humberside Police didn’t sit down and talk to us about this.

“We are very happy with the conditions, but we could have agreed those at a round-table meeting without the need for his hearing.”

Kurnia Licensing Consultants Comment:

After the client sought advice from Kurnia Licensing Consultants we agreed they had been pressured to to accepting conditions to be added to their premises licence via a minor variation. Examination of the conditions and evidence showed that 23 additional conditions were not necessary so the minor variation application was withdrawn and a request for a round table table meeting with the client and Humberside Police made. This request was refused and Humberside Police decided instead to submit an application to review the premises licence.

What could have been agreed around a table in an hour with minimal costs therefore had to be thrashed out at a contested hearing costing North East Lincolnshire Council, Humberside Police and the client. Kurnia Licensing Consultants estimate the total costs for all parties to be several thousand pounds.