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Sunday battle won by curry house at last

PUBLISHED: 17:09 13 May 2009 | UPDATED: 16:40 25 August 2010

CELEBRATING: Nural Hussain and Garry Bushell.

CELEBRATING: Nural Hussain and Garry Bushell.

AN INDIAN restaurateur has won a 15-year battle with a council to open on Sundays.

AN INDIAN restaurateur has won a 15-year battle with a council to open on Sundays.

Nurul Hussain, owner of Moghul Tandoori restaurant, in Main Road, Sidcup, first appeared in the Bexley Times in 1995, frustrated by the council's continual denial of a Sunday licence.

After councillors revised the ruling on March 26, the 40-year-old celebrated by throwing a Sunday lunch for 75 regulars including TV pundit Garry Bushell.

Mr Hussain said: "I'm pleased that they have finally come to their senses, but it is a bittersweet victory because they could have done this years ago.

"We have a lot of very loyal customers who were joined by Sidcup High Street Promotion Group and Mr Bushell.

"He's a regular and likes to get takeaways from us. He took some cooking tips from us when he appeared on Britain's Best Dish.

"Unfortunately he ended up trying to make a spicy mash pie. He should have made a vindaloo."

Moghul attracts a hardcore of around 70 regular customers each day of the weekend, claimed Mr Hussain.

The article written by the Bexley Times in the '90s provoked a lot of response from customers and when Mr Hussain applied for a Sunday licence this year many wrote in support.

The father-of-three, who worked at the restaurant since it opened in 1985, said: "We have some fantastic regulars who bring their families here every week who are curryholics.

"I sometimes see people coming in with a tan and they tell me they've come straight from the airport after a holiday, dying for a curry.

"It's like they're addicted. I hope we'll be around for the next 20 years for them."

Fighting a 'never ending battle', Mr Hussain said he now hopes to convince councillors to allow him to take over an empty shop unit next to his.

He added: "We're in a recession - they need to encourage businessmen to expand, not hold them back."

Moghul can now open until 9pm on Sundays. For more information visit www.themoghul.co.uk or call 020 8302 0665.

jules.cooper@archant.co.uk

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