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Hartlepool the first town in UK to ‘booze ban’

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UK: Hartlepool would be the first town in the UK to ban booze from every pub and club after 2am. In order to tackle alcohol-fuelled crime and disorder.

The licensing committee met at 2pm on Wednesday at Hartlepool Civic Centre. The Committee is being asked to look at bringing in an Early Morning Restriction Order (EMRO) on the sale of alcohol between 2am and 6am.

The alcohol ban could bring a big change to nights out in Hartlepool town centre if the EMRO is eventually initiated.
A report by Louise Wallace, Hartlepool’s director of public health, said: “No other licensing authority in the country has adopted an EMRO and, at the time of writing this report, it is believed that there are no EMRO’s being actively considered anywhere in the country”.

At present there are 14 premises in the town centre area licensed to sell drink later than 2am, out of which only few make use of their permitted hours.

The EMRO was first initiated in May 2013 but the plan was shelved due to the considered detrimental impact on local businesses. This is the third time the committee has looked at the option since 2013.

The report said: “If committee was minded to re-consider the introduction of an EMRO it would be necessary to demonstrate that it was appropriate to do so taking into account the trends in crime and disorder, the evidenced benefit that an EMRO would produce and the potential negative impact on the local economy.

“For a licensing authority to consider the adoption of an EMRO it must first be satisfied that there are recurring alcohol-related problems in a specific area between midnight and 6am, that an EMRO is the best option to address these problems and that there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate that an EMRO is appropriate.”

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