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Residents' campaign to silence nightclub fails

News Archive > Sport > Residents' campaign to silence nightclub fails

By Matt Bond on 07/04/2004

RESTORMEL BOROUGH Council voted unanimously in favour of Newquay's night-time economy on Thursday when it supported an application to renew a busy nightclub's public entertainment licence.

The decision to renew Tall Trees' licence was hotly anticipated by residents of nearby Tolcarne Mews, who opposed the application on grounds that drunken revellers leaving the club have made their lives a misery.

Tall Trees is one of Cornwall's best-known nightclubs and could have been faced with closure if the licence application was refused.

The application was considered by the borough council's licensing committee on Thursday night and it was unanimously decided that the club was being well managed and was persisting with measures to keep disruption down, so could continue operating.

The owners of Tall Trees, David and Rachael Matthews, say they are "over the moon" with the decision and, now its future is secure, can start investing money into the club.

The application was approved with conditions, which are yet to be finalised and released, however, Mr Matthews says that 99 per cent of these are already in effect.The nightclub has its door supervisors escort clubbers away from the building at closing time and D.J's makes announcements at the end of the night asking people to be quiet when they leave.

Tall Trees has also begun the innovative idea of handing out lollipops in a bid to pacify revellers as they leave the club and has an illuminated sign asking clubbers to leave quietly.

The renewed entertainment licence will expire in July but the couple envisage no further application problems.

Fed up residents in Tolcarne Mews, which is run by Sanctuary Housing Association, say they have had to endure ten years of suffering since their homes were built with drunken revellers often urinating, vomiting and having intercourse on their property.

David Matthews said of the householders concerns: "I admit that Tolcarne Mews as an estate is a problem area but it is not our club as a problem but that the houses are built in the wrong place. We will do whatever we can to minimise the impact on nearby residents."

Councillor Mark Formosa fought on behalf of Tolcarne Mews residents. He opposed the licence and urged those concerned, "to refuse the application on humanitarian grounds."

He said: "I have lived in the ward of Edgcumbe North all my life and in the last decade or so the nature of nightclubbing has changed dramatically, to the detriment of the residents who live nearby in the Tolcarne Road area and in particular the Tolcarne Mews.

"The residents have to endure sleep deprivation every night during the summer and also at weekends during the winter, very large numbers of inebriated young people congregate to board buses in Tolcarne Road where there is constant shouting, and frequent fighting.

"I believe that over the past ten years little or nothing has been done to deal with the problems caused by the proximity of the nightclub, and that the situation requires decisive action."

Sanctuary Housing Association is also acting on the concerns of the residents.

Joanne Curry, Sanctaury's South West regional director, said on Monday that the situation at Tolcarne Mews was, "unacceptable."

She added: "We are doing everything in our power to take action on behalf of our tenants. We opposed the granting of Tall Trees Night Club’s entertainment licence on the basis of public disorder and nuisance caused by clubbers.

"We are pleased that the Licensing Committee listened to the concerns of our tenants and the Association and we are now corresponding with the Council regarding the Special Conditions they agreed to impose."

As well as objecting to the entertainment licence Sanctuary Housing has previously agreed to relocate 14 of the 16 families from Tolcarne Mews.

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