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World Cup footie pub crowd leads to licence review

PUBLISHED: 10:19 08 July 2010 | UPDATED: 18:05 25 August 2010

Landlords who let 250 people into their pub for the first England World Cup match resulting in a doorman being seriously injured and a customer being arrested will find out today if their licence has been affected.

Landlords who let 250 people into their pub for the first England World Cup match resulting in a doorman being seriously injured and a customer being arrested will find out today if their licence has been affected.

Police want to limit the capacity of the Blue Anchor pub in Bridgen Road, Bexley, to 100 people at all times, be ticket -only for all world cup events, install CCTV, use plastic cups and to ban the marquee from its grounds.

This comes after police were forced to close the pub on June 12 after it was dangerously overcrowded and staff were still serving alcohol.

Bexley council's licensing sub committee suspended the license two days later and this evening are due to decide on the police's recommendations.

Officers wrote to the council saying: "The police are taking this action as serious crime has occurred at the premises and they have no confidence in the management's ability or willingness to prevent further serious crime. The premises are being managed in a manner that is putting people in danger with a risk assessment that is inaccurate and deliberately misleading.

"There was no room to move within the premises it was dangerously overcrowded yet the risk assessment stated the numbers were safe at 350.

"On police arrival the management of premises had not taken any action. The cessation of alcohol sale was at the direction of police as was the closure of the premises.

One man was arrested for being drunk and disorderly and when sober received a fixed penalty notice."

The risk assessment stated there was CCTV throughout the building and records are kept but police found the pub did not even have any CCTV. It also stated that they had a no glass policy yet police saw several customers drinking from glass wine bottles.

Since May 14 this year, police have been called to three fights at the pub prior to the events on June 12.

Operations director for the Blue Anchor, Paul Cutsforth said: "I am personally overseeing a full operational review with the focus on safety. The well-being of our staff and customers is our utmost priority and we're committed to providing the safest environment possible.

"We have a new management team at the pub and will become more of a food orientated venue. Other changes to the business include removing the pool table and juke box as well as a reduction in the number of tv screens."


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