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Pub wins its battle with neighbours to open an outside bar
A BILLERICAY pub has won its bid to open an outside bar despite opposition from angry residents.
The Crown, in High Street, submitted an application to Basildon Council to change its license to serve alcohol in its beer garden.
The changes were approved by councillors after bosses at the pub insisted a CCTV system was in place and at least three bouncers would be on hand Friday and Saturday nights to ensure customers’ safety.
Residents fear the outside bar, which could remain open until 1am, will cause noise disruption and a rise in antisocial behaviour.
Susan Green, of Norsey Green, Billericay, claims revellers regularly throw items over her garden wall, which she shares with the Crown’s beer garden.
She said: “A parasol is still lodged on my shed roof after it was sent over one particularly drunken night by one of their customers from the beer garden.
“My children are unable to go in the garden in the summer when beer glasses and bottles come over our wall, not to mention the foul language used by their customers, which I do not want my children exposed to.
“On Saturday and Sunday mornings, I have to pick up broken glass lining our pavements before I can walk the dog.
“He has already had his paws cut twice in our own garden from broken glass.
“Billericay is becoming a town where people travel into to get drunk. Our lives have become a misery and it is bad enough that our children can’t go out because of the amount of drunkenness on the streets of Billericay. They cannot even have quiet enjoyment in our own small garden.”
John Baron, MP for Basildon and Billericay, wrote an objection letter to licensing officers at Basildon Council asking them to turn down the proposals following numerous complaints from residents.
He said: “We have a lot of places in the High Street where drinks can be bought. I therefore question whether we need more.
“It remains my view we must guard against Billericay High Street turning into a pub alley.”
The license change does not permit music to be played in the outside bar area.
David Rippo, co-owner of the Crown, said: “There are people making a fuss about noise and things that will not even happen.
The pub has been here 100 years and it’s just a matter of change.
“We are going to make every effort to work with the residents, but at the end of the day, this is a business and they have to accept we’re here in the same way we have to accept them.”
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