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Erith pub keeps licence after cocaine bust

PUBLISHED: 17:00 12 August 2010

the ship erith

the ship erith

Archant

A pub has escaped losing its licence even though cocaine was found in the toilets and a regular was arrested with what police believe to be 11 wraps of the class A drugs.

Bexley police recommended to the council that The Ship pub in West Street, Erith, have its licence revoked but councillors last Friday let them keep it on the condition they install CCTV and check the toilets for drugs every half-an-hour.

The license was suspended on June 14 after a string of incidents dating back more than 17 months. Swabbing of the toilets in February this year found higher levels of cocaine than previously recorded.

In May police arrested a regular customer with what is believed to be 11 wraps of cocaine and a large ball of white powder.

Despite this 68 residents and patrons wrote to the council asking councillors to keep the pub opposite the West Street Youth and Family Centre, open.

The licensing sub committee were satisfied that the suspension of the licence will have assisted in breaking the cycle of drugs use and supply at the pub.

The condition also states that all staff should receive training in responsible retail of alcohol and drugs deterrence and the implementation of a drugs policy.

Staff have been ordered to make two checks per hour of the toilets.

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