New 24/7 License for Courthouse Hotel?

We draw your attention to a new license application that could lead to yet another major late-night party venue in Shoreditch.  The soon-to-be-opened Courthouse Hotel (the old Magistrates Court, opposite Town Hall, on the corner of Old Street and Hoxton Street) has applied for a license allowing:

  • Entertainment (including live music, recorded music and dance) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week;
  • Supply of alcohol 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; and
  • Late night hot food from 11:00pm to 5:00am, 7 days a week

Clearly, a hotel requires a license in order to serve its guests.  However, we have the following major concerns:

  • Recent evidence from other hotels shows that once a license is granted the hotel can market itself as a ‘destination’ venue for drinking and all-night raves, in effect becoming a nightclub through the backdoor and attracting large party crowds;
  • The plans for the hotel have a “roof-top bar and function area”, which can serve as an outdoor clubbing space, with noise from that height traveling unabated; and
  • A side entrance on Hoxton Street close to residential properties, leading to even more inebriated punters congregating in an already crowded area.

The SCA has written to Licensing to express these concerns.  We urge you to support our efforts and send your own representations ahead of the deadline on 26 August (strictly enforced).  Suggested text is below, but please use your own words if possible.

Sincerely,
The Shoreditch Community Association

********************************************
SUGGESTED TEXT FOR HACKNEY LICENSING:

To: Hackney Licensing (licensing@hackney.gov.uk)
Re: Courthouse Hotel, 335/337 Old Street, London EC1V 9LL

I write to object to this proposed licence for entertainment, alcohol and late-night refreshment for the following reasons:

– This venue is within the Shoreditch Special Policy Area, which means that the license should be automatically refused absent “exceptional circumstances”, which do not exist.

– There are many residential properties in the immediate vicinity of the venue

– The location of the venue is in the middle of a zone that is saturated beyond breaking point with late-night drinking and party venues, attracting hordes of booze tourists every weekend causing intolerable noise, anti-social behaviour, littering and fouling of the streets.  The last thing the area needs is yet another major late-night venue.  This venue will add to the cumulative impact and existing issues of noise and disorder.

– While a hotel can reasonably be expected to require a license in order to serve its guests, once granted the license can easily be abused for other purposes.

– The plans for the Courthouse Hotel include a “roof-top bar and function area”.  Noise from a rooftop space travels unabated over a wide distance, leading to significant disturbance for surrounding residents.

– The proposed side entrance in Hoxton Street is directly adjacent to several residential properties and could become a focal point for lingering crowds, presenting issues of safety to children and noise/disorder.

Any license granted to the Courthouse Hotel must be carefully worded and restricted to ensure that it can only be used to serve hotel guests, and that any activities (and resulting noise) are well contained within the building and occur at reasonable hours.

I wish to be advised of the date for the Sub-Committee meeting.

[Name]
[Address]
(I do not consent to the release of any personally identifiable information.)

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