Concern over owners’ plans for South Parade Pier bar

PROPOSAL The owners of South Parade Pier want to open up a 'family-friendly bar'. ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (122983-2)
PROPOSAL The owners of South Parade Pier want to open up a 'family-friendly bar'. ''Picture: Paul Jacobs (122983-2)

Portsmouth council agree to consult on Victoria Park revamp

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CONCERNS have been raised over a bid to open another bar on South Parade Pier.

Owners Fred Nash and Dawn Randall have asked Portsmouth City Council to consider a number of proposals for a new bar they want to introduce to the rear of the arcade.

It will be joined by two other ones inside called Albert Bar and Gaiety Bar. Plays could be held between 11am and 2am from Monday to Thursday, from 11am to 3am on Fridays and Saturdays and up to 10.30pm on Sundays.

Film exhibitions would be held from 10am until 2am each day. Alcohol would be served from 11am until 2am Monday to Saturday and from midday until 12.30am on Sundays.

Though the licensing application says the bar would be open from 6am until 4am every day, Mr Nash insists it wouldn’t stay open any later than midnight.

Licensing manager Richard Chalmers said in a report that CCTV system must be in operation and security staff need to be on the door.

Portsmouth City Councillor Luke Stubbs said the move could have a big impact on residents because a lot of other drinking venues that used to be on the seafront have gone.

‘I live very close to the pier,’ he said. ‘This will encourage huge numbers of people to come to the pier and although it has had a licence for a long time, the climate has changed.

‘The feeder pubs have gone and the pier is now all out on its own.

‘It appears that the owners want to operate the pier like they used to and that will have an impact on the locality.’

As previously reported, there have been questions about whether the pier is structurally safe and can cope with large numbers of visitors. Mr Nash said: ‘We are looking for a family-friendly bar, not a music bar. Who can claim the pier is not structurally safe unless they are experts?’

The licensing sub-committee will make a decision on Wednesday.