Police want pub’s licence removed over drink trouble

The Shearer Arms
The Shearer Arms
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POLICE are calling for a city pub to be shut down amid concerns over the way it is being operated.

Hampshire Constabulary wants the premises licence given to The Shearer Arms, in Shearer Road, Buckland, reviewed and says it should ultimately be removed.

But residents have jumped to the defence of the local and are demanding it be saved.

It comes after public documents produced by police reveal customers were drinking and loud music was being played after hours on occasions. One resident was kept up until 4.15am because of people going in and out and shouting.

Following on from this police attended at 12.45am on another day and discovered that the pub’s co-owner, Martin Graham, was drunk.

Between 10 to 12 customers were sat drinking booze and music could be heard from the street.

In a statement going before Portsmouth City Council’s licensing committee on Monday, a police spokesman says: ‘Police feel that the only real option in dealing with the issues effectively is the complete revocation of the premises licence for this venue. This will stop the operators operating in a way with a complete disregard for the licensing objectives and the licensing authorities and the local community.’

Ten residents have sent letters to the council urging that no action is taken, and saying there are no problems.

Susan Kealey, of Shakespeare Road, Fratton, said: ‘I have used The Shearer Arms since the day I moved into the area.

‘The pub has a good crowd of people which makes for good community spirit.

‘It is warm, friendly and caters for all age groups, this is why lots of people use it.’

Andy Limb, of New Road, Buckland, said: ‘I have never seen any crime or disorder, the landlords make you feel most welcome when you use the pub, and encourage friends and family to use the premises.’

Another customer said: ‘The last three years it’s been a pleasure to go there. It’s an old-fashioned pub, mostly older people go in there.’

The council committee will decide what to do with the pub’s licence at a public meeting on Monday in Portsmouth Guildhall from 9.30am. Mr Graham and Mark Flood – another owner of the pub responsible for alcohol sales – were unreachable for comment.