A COMMUNITY park has been granted an alcohol and entertainment license while a pub has seen a requested extension refused.

The Friends of Hardie Park, Stanford-le-Hope, were successful in their application for a licence granting them permission to put on three events a year with live music, recorded music, performances and dance, as well as the supply of alcohol between 11am and 4pm Monday to Thursday and 10pm Friday to Sunday.

At the same time, however, the council’s licensing sub-committee rejected a plan to allow the Inn on the Green, also in Stanford-le-Hope, to open until 3am on the night of August 1-2 and the two following weekends, following an objection from the council’s environmental health team.

Chairman Mike Stone explained the committee’s decision.

He said: “The pub already has a licence allowing it to stay open into the early hours of Saturday morning and we felt increasing this by two hours three times next month was unnecessary, unreasonable and not in keeping with the character of the area, as well as failing to promote licensing objectives around public nuisance.

“Although this is in the town, the pub is surrounded by homes fairly close-by and we were told there is already a history of nuisance complaints from the pub around loud music and public order issues.”

The committee’s decision on the Hardie Park application was not without reservation, however, with the police suggesting a number of conditions which would need to be met – and the proposed number of events was cut from six a year to three.

The police conditions included the use of a Challenge 25 policy with all staff trained in its operation, that a personal licence holder be present at every point of sale, that all drinks are served in plastic cups and that no member of the public should leave the premises in possession of alcohol.

It also followed a 39-name petition which was received by the council from concerned residents and insistence from the environmental health team that only Friends of Hardie Park events are held there and the park is not hired out to third parties.

Councillor Stone said: “We felt the enthusiasm of the Friends to create something new and exciting for their local area deserved support but it is equally important that local people are not upset by the proposals.

“I hope and expect that the friends will be able to liaise with people whose homes neighbour the park and that a happy compromise can be achieved.”