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Wednesday, 17 September 2014

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Police shut Workington pub over 'serious violence'

Outbreaks of “serious violence” at a Workington pub have prompted police to use emergency powers to get it shut down.

Appletree pub
The Appletree

The Appletree on Finkle Street was closed yesterday after Allerdale council’s licensing panel agreed to an immediate suspension of the pub’s licence amid public safety fears.

This is only the second time police have used these powers to get a problem pub closed in the town.

The review followed at least three recent assaults which left some victims needing hospital treatment.

Inspector Mark Wear said: “It is unusual for us to take the step of having to invoke emergency powers to ask a panel to suspend a licence.

“Despite working with the licensee to resolve issues associated with this pub there has been a clear continuation of serious violence. We have made this application today as there was a pressing need to prevent further disorder, maximise public safety and offer respite to people living nearby. The last time – and the only other time – such action was taken in Workington was on the Labour Club [the William Street Private Members’ Club].”

He added: “We have had officers trying to work with licensees to reduce the number of incidents but unfortunately we have had to take this action.”

The most recent incident took place on Tuesday night when a 24-year-old man from Workington was arrested on suspicion of assault. There was also another serious incident last month and another in November.

Licensee Anita Gilpin, who was unavailable for comment, has been given 48 hours to appeal against the decision.

A further hearing will be held within 28 days during which the police will make application to have the premises licence permanently revoked.

The final decision on the fate of the town centre pub will be made by Allerdale Council. Police are able to carry out an expedited review of a premises licence where it is considered that a pub is associated with “serious crime or disorder”.

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