Violent attacks put future of Liquid & Envy Portsmouth in doubt

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THE future of a city nightclub is in jeopardy following a spate of violent incidents.

Hampshire Constabulary has raised major concerns about trouble arising at Liquid & Envy in Portsmouth’s city centre.

Liquid & Envy in Portsmouth

Liquid & Envy in Portsmouth

Fourteen attacks have happened in the club since November – including one in which a woman kicked a bouncer in the face.

A door worker also had their eye gouged by a visitor at the club, which is the largest in Portsmouth with a capacity of around 2,000.

And the club has been linked with another 21 crimes – 11 involving clubbers being in the possession of drugs.

Police say the ‘overwhelming majority’ of violent behaviour is happening on Friday nights and involves people under 21.

The concerns have been raised by PC Matt Moss, of Portsmouth Police Licensing Team, in a report for the city council’s licensing committee to determine whether conditions should be imposed on the venue.

But councillors also have the option of revoking the venue’s licence.

Police first raised concerns over trouble in September last year before club bosses came up with an action plan to tackle the problem.

This included increasing the number of door staff, scanning the ID of every male that went in, improving staff training and bringing in a second body-worn camera to monitor incidents.

Yet PC Moss says the measures have not brought lasting improvements.

He wrote: ‘The chief officer of police is of the opinion that a fundamental change is required both to the licence and to the approach of the venue in its operation.

‘The police are concerned that when issues are raised the cracks are papered over and not fully addressed.’

A Liquid & Envy spokesperson said: ‘Liquid & Envy is a well-run, professional club and the safety and enjoyment of our customers is our main priority.

‘We take the concerns raised seriously, but would highlight the police’s acknowledgement of the efforts our team have made to minimise anti social behaviour.

‘We will continue to work in partnership with the police and local authorities to 
ensure that we build on and sustain the progress we have already made.’

A decision about the club’s licence will be made at a public meeting at Portsmouth Guildhall on March 4.