Licence approval moves pub takeover forward

Campbell's Landing pub, Clevedon.

Campbell's Landing pub, Clevedon. - Credit: Archant

A CLEVEDON pub will be taken over by the Mezze restaurant group after a new premises licence was granted for it.

Campbell’s Landing will be refurbished to the tune of some £750,000 to £1million before it is reopened as a restaurant and hotel venue.

The Mezze group already operates five restaurants in the South West and will strike a deal with Enterprise Inns to take a 25-year lease of The Beach pub in Clevedon.

As part of planned alterations to the building, a much larger dining area will be created, prompting Enterprise Inns to apply for a new, more relevant premises licence from North Somerset Council.

However, the application, which requested the sale of alcohol and the playing of recorded music until 2am on Thursdays to Saturdays, prompted 91 objections from nearby residents concerned late-night opening could result in antisocial behaviour as drinkers leave the venue.

At a licensing sub-committee meeting held at Weston Town Hall on Thursday, a number of objectors spoke against the application citing experiences of regular disturbances, criminal damage and loud noise when the Blitz nightclub operated at the former Royal Pier Hotel building in the 1990s.

However, throughout the hearing it was reiterated to objectors that the new licence would in fact be reducing the allowed operating hours compared with the current licence for the pub which permits the sale of alcohol until 3am.

Richard Taylor, representing Enterprise Inns and the Mezze group, was also keen to dispel fears that Campbell’s Landing will be operated as a nightclub.

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He said: “This is a food-led operation with hotel rooms.

“It will not be a bar facility attracting young people who want to drink blue drinks from a bottle.

“It will be for the slightly older person. The average spend per head will be about £30 for a meal and drinks.”

At the end of the hearing, the sub-committee decided to grant the new licence but with alterations, including the fact on Thursdays alcohol can only be sold until midnight, rather than 2am.

Mr Taylor also offered to withdraw the showing of films, live music performances and anything of a similar description, such as karaoke, from the licence application.