We've covered a few issues around licensed premises in Kings Cross in recent weeks. I raised this with Cllr Paul Convery who has helpfully pointed me to the new licensing policy for Kings Cross, recognising the increase in applications. The extract from the policy document is below. If readers wish to object to the applications they they should at least insist that licensees, if granted follow the conditions in 77 below (from page 51 of the document).
71. King’s Cross has undergone some radical changes in recent years. For example the new Regent Quarter development, has seen the refurbishment of the old Georgian and Victorian buildings opposite King’s Cross Station, combined with new modern buildings, to create a mixed use development of residential and commercial units. Further north, along York Way, is the newly built King’s Place, a several story building housing exhibition space, dining facilities, performance space, offices and conference facilities.
72. King’s Cross is continuing to undergo one of the largest and most complex programmes of planning and development led regeneration in Europe. There are a number of major projects currently underway, or at the planning stages. By 2020, an estimated 60 million passengers a year will pass through the King's Cross transport interchange, almost the same current passenger numbers as at Heathrow airport. There are two areas in the King’s Cross Central development, called the Main site and the Triangle site: the main site, which is in the London Borough of Camden, and the Triangle site, which falls in both Camden and Islington boroughs.
73. These recent, as well as the proposed developments in the area, have already led to an increase in the numbers of licence applications. In the two years proceeding July 2008 there were 15 applications for new premises licences in Caledonian Ward. It is anticipated that this trend will increase.
74. The Licensing Authority has already seen an increase in representations lodged by local residents and Ward Councillors citing problems with cumulative impact issues such as noise disturbance, drunken fights and crime due to intoxicated persons in the area.
75. Furthermore, the area is regularly used by football fans on route to or from the Emirates Stadium. While it is recognised that the overwhelming majority of fans are well behaved, a small minority are associated with problems of public nuisance and crime and disorder. The Licensing Authority has received complaints concerning antisocial behaviour such as littering, noise nuisance, fighting, vandalism and obstruction of the public highway arising from football fans visiting the licensed premises in the area.
76. The Council adopted a Designated Public Place Order, or controlled drinking zone, for the King’s Cross area of Islington, in June 2010. The order gives the Police powers to confiscate alcohol from people drinking in public. It is not an offence to consume alcohol within the designated area, however failure to cease drinking and or surrender alcohol on request by a police officer is.
77. As with the Angel, in order to reduce the potential negative impacts of increasing development on the licensing objectives, applicants must demonstrate detailed consideration of the need to promote the licensing objectives in their operating schedules. Where appropriate, operating schedules should show evidence of the consideration of:
steps to prevent crime and disorder emanating from the premises and escalating in the area;
steps applicants intend to take to educate their customers and prevent public nuisance arising from illegally dumped waste and litter, and prevent the use of alleyways, street corners, and open pavements in the vicinity of their premises as urinals;
how applicants intend, through the provision of licensed door staff, to assist in the control of illegal minicab touting which is associated with the serious crimes of abduction, rape and other sexual assaults and is becoming an issue of growing concern for the police;
applicants' intention to be active members of the pub watch, or shop watch schemes operating in this area;
a regard for the nature of the area and provision of premises that will be welcomed by the wider community;
where premises are used for the reception of football fans, the steps the applicant intends to take to minimise the potential negative impacts caused by the congregation of large groups of people, such as litter, noise nuisance and obstruction of the highway.;
the applicant’s intention to adopt the Licensees’ Charter.