Council hearing for Leeds city centre hotel alcohol licence

Council officers have warned against plans for a proposed 'boutique hotel' in Leeds city centre to serve alcohol until 2am.

The meeting will take place in Leeds Civic Hall on Tuesday.
The meeting will take place in Leeds Civic Hall on Tuesday.

An application for late night refreshment for the new hotel in Duncan Street is set to be discussed by Leeds City Council’s licensing sub-committee tomorrow. (Tuesday)

But the site falls in one of the city’s “cumulative impact areas”, which police and the council believe are at risk of alcohol-related crime.

The application asks for permission to play recorded music and serve alcohol every day between 10am and 2am, and for late night refreshment from 11pm to 2am.

A statement from West Yorkshire Police said: “The location of these proposed premises is in very close proximity to a multitude of other licensed premises in the area.

“It is an alcohol related violent crime hot-spot for robbery, assault and theft. The peak time for crime in the area is between 11pm and 4am.”

It added that the Briggate and Call Lane area has had a 15 per cent rise in reported crime since a year ago. That is on top of a 17 per cent rise the previous year.

It said that an offer to only serve alcohol to bona fide residents and their guests after 11pm was open to abuse.

A letter from Leeds City Council’s licensing team said it was council policy to reject the application unless the applicant could prove that it wouldn’t add to existing alcohol-related problems in the area.

It added: “Bearing in mind the severity of the problems being experiences in the area suffering from the highest levels of violent crime and disorder incidences in the city centre, and experiencing a further increase in crime in 2017, the licensing authority is of the opinion that (the) application contains insufficient information about how your application would not add to the impact already being experienced in the area.”

A document from the applicant stated it would help stamp out trouble by providing CCTV systems, an incident report register and radio communication with other venues in the city centre.

A decision on the licence is expected at the meeting on Tuesday morning.