Hitchin bar applies for opening hours extension

A TOWN centre bar situated near people’s homes is applying to extend its opening hours.

Que Pasa, based in Hitchin Market Place, wants to open until 3am on Friday and Saturday evenings – an hour later than it does currently.

It also wants to extend the time it can play music and sell alcohol.

In an application to NHDC, which will be considered at a licensing and appeals committee later this month, it requests to amend its licence.

Marston’s PLC, which owns the chain, says in the application: “An extension of one hour, in the opinion of the applicant, does not present any additional risks to the licensing objectives.”

The application has received no complaints from Herts Police, which has also agreed that punters can enter the premises up until 2am on Saturdays – an hour later than the current 1am curfew.

But one Market Place resident has objected, claiming it will affect those living nearby.

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In a letter to the council, published as part of the report which will go to the licensing committee, she says: “Since the introduction of the Licensing Act 2003, I have expressed my concerns regarding the increase in anti-social behaviour and noise nuisance, which I believe is a direct result of NHDC licensing authority granting the public house a late night premises license.

“As a resident of Market Place, I have the right to enjoy my home.

“I am objecting to this application for... prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance [and] protection of children from harm.”

Que Pasa has not requested amendment to Sunday and weekday opening hours.

The chain said it did not have a comment to make at this stage.

A meeting will be held at NHDC’s offices in Letchworth GC on Tuesday, November 13, where a decision will be made.

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