Cambs police oppose ‘extra burden’ of 2am kebab shop licence

THE police are objecting to an application to sell alcoholic drink in a kebab house in Ramsey, fearing an increase in crime in the town centre.

Hasan Yuksel, who runs the Ramsey Kebab and Pizza in Great White, has applied to Huntingdonshire District Council to sell alcohol for consumption off the premises between 4pm and 10pm Monday to Thursday and until 2am on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

But the police have objected to the application, also pointing out the additional police workload the proposal implies.

“The police are concerned that the level of crime, disorder and anti-social behaviour in the area will increase,” Sgt David Savill has told HDC’s licensing sub-committee, which will hear the matter next Thursday morning.

“Ramsey’s highest crime type is criminal damage, followed by violent offences against the person. The majority of these offences occur on Friday and Saturday evenings.

“Of those arrested for offences related to these crime types virtually all persons are under the influence of alcohol.”

Sgt Savill said Ramsey currently has five public houses, two off-licences and three restaurants, all of which are licensed to sell alcohol, as well as a large supermarket open till midnight.

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“The limited resources of the neighbourhood policing team would struggle to cope with another addition to a problem that is already difficult enough to police. The hours applied for will tend to allow persons out into the street late at night, and will cause noise, shouting, swearing and rowdy behaviour.

“Ramsey is a mainly residential area with many of the population who live within the vicinity of the town’s licensed premises being elderly.”

With all other licensed premises closed by 1am at the latest, the sergeant also fears a 2am licence would result in people from other premises going to the Great Whyte after closing time elsewhere, extending the time officers need to be deployed.

He urges the sub-committee, if it is minded to grant a licence at all, to limit sales to 10pm and to people buying food.