Resident urging council to call time on drunks

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A RESIDENT who lives near a busy town centre bar has compiled a DVD of drunken behaviour outside his home in a bid to convince councillors to take action.

Keith Sutherland has gathered together CCTV footage of people engaging in anti-social behaviour outside his home in Lowtown at Pudsey, Leeds.

Mr Sutherland blames drinkers from the Bojangles wine bar in Lowtown for much of the trouble.

He has applied to the council for the premises licence to be reviewed which can, in some instances, lead to bars closing down.

In a letter to the council, he says the CCTV footage shows:

* Customers urinating outside his dining room window.

* People taking drugs outside his bedroom window.

* His wife being racially abused by a bar customer after asking them to stop urinating in front of their 12-year-old niece.

* Fighting in the street.

The letter, written to local councillor Mick Coulson last week, demands action to be taken to stop the disturbance to residents.

It asks: “Would you be happy to see this sort of behaviour outside your window? Do you consider that all of any of your constituents should have to put up with this?”

He adds: “I know nothing of your family circumstances councillor, but I sincerely hope that neither your family, nor indeed any family on your ward, will have to go through what our niece was subjected to by the urinating drunk you should now have seen on the CCTV coverage.”

Councillor Coulson said in an earlier email to the council’s licensing department that he could not see a problem with Bojangles.

“I have known this establishment since it first opened,” he said. “It has never been a problem to the area. In fact it is known as one of Pudsey’s better run bars.”

He said that “no departments” had received any complaints against Bojangles.

Mr Sutherland’s complaints have been backed by Sandra Howe, who runs The Ironing Room, a business in Lowtown.

She said: “My laundry premises are directly next door to Bonjangles and every Friday and Saturday night when I go home the parking area and pavement are clean but every Saturday and Sunday morning when I come to work I have to sweep the pavement of god knows what, pick up broken glass, small packets which I believe have contained drugs, and used condoms.

“I pay substantial business rates but it is I, not the council or the owners of Bojangles, who has to pick up the rubbish and detritus. As it only seems to be weekends when I have these problems, I must conclude it is the late night entertainment that is attracting these horrible people who are taking the drugs and making the mess.”

She said businesses had a right to make a living but not to “harm their neighbours”.

West Yorkshire Police said it could not support Mr Sutherland’s application for the licence to be reviewed.

Inspector Richard Cawkwell, based at Pudsey police station, has told the council: “In the grand scheme of things I don’t consider Bojangles to be a problem location for the police in terms of crime and disorder.”

He said the crimes recorded for that location were not excessive. And he said there was no information that drugs were a problem at the premises.

Members of the council’s licensing sub-committee will discuss the application at a meeting on Monday, May 14. No-one was available to comment from Bojangles.