Radio Sandwell Local News

Gatecrasher nightclub could be closed if there is any more violence

2015-09-15 12:44:43

GatecrasherGatecrasher on Broad Street, where a bouncer attacked a customer.

Birmingham’s biggest nightclub has been warned it is in the 'last chance saloon' after a customer was attacked by a bouncer.

Gatecrasher on Broad Street had its licence suspended for a fortnight in the wake of last month’s incident.

It later reopened but police warned the venue faced permanent closure if there were any more problems.

Pc Abdul Rohoman told councillors at a licensing meeting: “This really is the last chance saloon for these premises.

“There have been review hearings in the past and this venue already has more conditions on its licence than any other in Birmingham.

“This is about maintaining standards that are very high.

“The spotlight is on them.”

Gatecrasher’s licence was initially suspended after the incident in the early hours of August 15.

It was then ordered to terminate its contract with its security firm at an expedited review on August 19.

Officials were also told to conduct a root-and-branch review of the management team and that the venue would operate at just 50 per cent capacity in the first week.

The club successfully appealed the 14-day suspension and it reopened on August 27 after meeting the interim steps.

Members of the licensing sub committee B ruled today, Monday, that an internal audit and action plan – drawn up in the wake of the incident – must be reviewed by the club and police at least every month.

West Midlands Police asked for no further action against the venue in the light of the steps taken.

PC Rohoman, licensing officer for the force, said: “It’s unusual for us to come here and to ask for no further action.

“But if it had not been for what the club has done in the last month we would have been asking for a revocation.

“We believe lessons have been learned.

“We are not saying they should get away scot-free.

“We want to put on record that there is not much more we can do.

“We are not proposing extra conditions because they are already there.

Raymond McVeighty, speaking on behalf of the 2,400 capacity club, said it had restructured its management team, sacked its security company and replaced its medical provider.

He said a member of the management team had been disciplined and the club had drafted in external consultants to draw up the internal audit and action plan.

Mr McVeighty said: “It has been acknowledged that there has been some complacency.

“But make no mistake, in the last month enormous steps have been taken.

“The recommendation of police for no further action is unusual, but I would echo this because it was different a month ago.

“There were gaps, but these have been remedied.

“The urgent application has succeeded already in what it wanted to do, which was to create an enormous review.

“This has triggered a massive improvement.”

Gatecrasher managing director Simon Raine told the hearing: “There has been a complete review at our end.

“We were using the right company but for too long.

“Everything will be out to tender every six or 12 months in future. I think the actions of one doorman is why we are here.

“The steps that we have put in place will minimise the risks in future.”

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