On Monday I shall be attending a meeting of the borough's Licensing & Regulatory committee, of which I am a member. I shall be putting an amendment to a recommendation to adopt the revised Licensing Statement of Policy, calling for a reinstatement of the Special Area Policy (SAP) that has existed for the last two years.
Despite what the Bury Free Press says on page two today, this policy does not make it "harder" to get a licence in the town; but it does require the applicant to show that a new licence will not add to the cumulative impact of licences in the area. This means that instead of objectors having to prove that a licence may be harmful, the applicant has to prove it will not be. It is a subtle change of emphasis and this may indeed make it "harder" to apply for a licence, but it does ensure a higher standard of application which is reassuring for local residents and businesses alike.
Representatives of the Churchgate Area Association will be presenting a petition at the start of the meeting, also calling for the SAP to be reinstated.
I am grateful to Bury Boy for reminding me that I had not posted on the greatest success of the week, namely that the committee voted 8-1 for my amendment. The SAP will now receive 12 weeks legal consultation, before the committee has t decide on March 21st whether to recommend the SAP to council for reinstatement.