Hackney Council Floats Restrictive Hospitality Laws

Hackney Council has just approved some of the United Kingdom’s most restrictive laws on licensing. The local authority who is in charge of issuing the permits for the local hospitality venues has issued the policy, though at the moment it is just a proposal and it remains to be seen if it will be brought into effect. The new regulations would request that many of the borough’s late-night establishments would have to close by 12 am at the weekend and 11 pm during the week. The new policy would also affect things such as outdoor markets as well as pubs and nightclubs. The local administration voted to widen the Shoreditch Special Policy Area which would make it much more difficult for new venues in Hackney to obtain a license for their operations. Despite much criticism from many of the locals and those who have businesses in the area, the council has come out to strongly defend its new proposals. They said that if the new policy comes into effect it will not be a blanket ban but rather businesses will have to show that they are responsible operators before a license will be issued to them.

The new proposals by Hackney Council will not affect any businesses who are currently open in the area but many feel it will prohibit the expansion of new and independent industries from opening in what is one of London’s most eclectic and exciting places to eat, drink and party. A local organisation called We Love Hackney has said it has the potential to stop young, fresh ideas from coming to the streets and will meal that only established chains will be able to operate in the area. It is not popular with locals either, after a consultation in January it was found that 75% of people opposed the plans.

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