Pub dance­floor to be scrapped

Kent Messenger Maidstone - - FRONT PAGE -

A pub which “be­came a night­club” at week­ends has agreed to re­move its dance­floor af­ter an in­ci­dent which saw a man punched un­con­scious and a woman struck by a bot­tle of Pros­ecco.

Greene King, which op­er­ates the Crick­eters in Rain­ham High Street, brought for­ward pro­posed changes to the li­cence fol­low­ing a series of in­ci­dents which cul­mi­nated in last month’s melee.

Th­ese in­clude ditch­ing the makeshift dance­floor, hav­ing four door staff when the pub is open post-11pm, and host­ing only 10 pre-booked events – such as fes­tive and char­ity evenings – ev­ery year. Al­co­hol will still be served un­til 1am on Fri­days and Satur­days, with the pub clos­ing at 1.30am – some­thing which the chain said was cru­cial for the busi­ness to be vi­able in the fu­ture.

Med­way Coun­cil’s li­cens­ing hear­ing panel agreed the new con­di­tions on Tues­day morn­ing, and they should come into ef­fect “by the end of the week”.

Po­lice said there was an “un­com­fort­able” at­mos­phere brew­ing at the pub over the months, with 10 “vi­o­lent in­ci­dents” re­ported to the force so far this year. On July 21, a group of men as­saulted “at least three sep­a­rate peo­ple”, in­clud­ing a woman who suf­fered a large cut to the crown of her head when she was hit by a tossed glass bot­tle of Pros­ecco.

In­terim steps, which stopped the pub from trad­ing af­ter 11pm on Fri­days and Satur­days, saw al­co­hol sales be­tween 7pm and 1am fall by 70%. Cus­tomers din­ing at the pub also com­plained about hav­ing to drink wine out of plas­tic cups.

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