Opposition grows to plan for night club in Stevenage

A PETITION has been mounted opposing plans to open a nightclub, with a closing time of 4am, close to a block of retirement homes. Residents living in retirement apartments in Danestrete, Stevenage have discovered an application has been submitted to Steve

A PETITION has been mounted opposing plans to open a nightclub, with a closing time of 4am, close to a block of retirement homes.

Residents living in retirement apartments in Danestrete, Stevenage have discovered an application has been submitted to Stevenage Borough Council's (SBC) licensing committee for J's Bar and Lounge to open in The Plaza.

The applicants, Jeremy Dickens and John Maher, propose to open the nightclub, in the former Yates's building, in March 2010.

If the application is given the green light by the council they will be permitted to play live and recorded music from 8pm until 2am on Thursdays, and until 3am on Fridays and Saturdays.

The nightclub owners would also be permitted to supply alcohol from 8pm until 2am on Thursdays, and until 3am on Fridays and Saturdays.

The premises could stay open until 2.30am on Thursdays and until 4am on Fridays and Saturdays.

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Ann Fisher, who lives in a retirement apartment in Danestrete, said: "It's on the doorstep and it doesn't seem fair. There are about 80 apartments and people have come here to retire, to be near the shops, and to be quiet. We're worried about the noise and about anti-social behaviour. There are people in their 90s living here, and there are a lot of ladies who are older and living on their own. It's going to affect a lot of people."

The 68-year-old has collected about 50 signatures from neighbours who are opposing the plans, and has presented the petition to SBC.

She cannot see the need for a nightclub in The Plaza. "There is plenty going on at the leisure park," she said.

In a statement supplied to the licensing committee by Mr Dickens and Mr Maher, it said: "Please be assured that we don't have the intention of setting up this business and then employing someone else to run it. We both intend to be onsite all the time that we are open to the public, taking our duties and responsibilities very seriously."

The licensing committee will discuss the application for a premises licence for J's Bar and Lounge when it meets on November 19.

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