Police seek blue review

Blue Lounge
Blue Lounge

A POPULAR Scarborough bar is to have its licence reviewed following repeated incidents of crime and disorder.

North Yorkshire Police have formally asked Scarborough Council to impose a series of conditions on Blue Lounge in St Nicholas Street, aimed at reducing crime levels at the venue.

Inspector Tony Quinn said the force had no choice but seek a review, after informal attempts at improving the situation at the town centre nightspot failed.

Insp Quinn said: “I can confirm that North Yorkshire Police have asked for a review of the licence of Blue Lounge bar in St Nicholas St, following concerns arising from a relatively high level of crime and disorder associated with the premises.

“We have had meetings with the management of Blue Lounge, but the problems have persisted leaving us no alternative.”

If the police application is successful, drinks would only be served in plastic containers. Bottled drinks would have to be poured into plastic receptacles before being served to the public.

The police have also asked for the removal of the venue’s designated premises supervisor and for all door staff to wear high-visibility jackets.

All door staff would also have to have been approved by the Security Industry Authority and police would have more control over the number of door staff required at the bar.

The application also requests that CCTV footage from the venue is kept securely for at least 21 days and that a condition that allows the bar to remain open until 5.30am on New Year’s Eve is removed.

More lighting would be installed at the bar’s fire exists and door staff would be forced to perform certain tasks, including randomly searching revellers for weapons.

Notices informing members of the public of the review have been posted in the vicinity of the bar and comments from members of the public have been invited.

It is expected that a decision will be made in late March or early April.

Andy Skelton, the council’s head of Environmental Services, said: “We have received a request from North Yorkshire Police to review the licence of Blue Lounge and the application has been accepted.

“The review application will now be considered by the council’s licensing sub-committee.”

Recent figures published by the Home Office showed that St Nicholas Street was the third most violent stretch of road in the whole of Yorkshire and the Humber during December.

A total of 61 crimes and instances of anti-social behaviour in the 185 yard street were reported over the month, including 17 violent crimes.

Nearby St Thomas Street also scored poorly, with 43 instances of disorder recorded.

A series of police initiatives, including the introduction of street angels and marshalls, have been introduced in recent years in a bid to reduce crime levels in the town centre.

Last month, police released an image of a man they wanted to speak to in connection with a serious assault at Blue Lounge, in which a man suffered a fractured cheek bone.

In December, a 19-year-old woman was taken to hospital after she was assaulted on the venue’s dancefloor.