Hartlepool micropub bosses apologise for ‘shortfalls and shortcomings’ as The 9 Anchors promises to resolve problems

Bosses at a popular micropub have apologised after complaints of ‘loud music’ and ‘intimidation’ from nearby residents.

Tuesday, 16th April 2019, 5:22 pm
Updated Tuesday, 16th April 2019, 5:34 pm
The 9 Anchors pub Seaton Carew. Picture by FRANK REID

Hartlepool Borough Council’s licensing sub-committee reviewed the licence for The 9 Anchors, The Front in Seaton Carew, after complaints of amplified music being played and pub goers causing issues outside flats nearby.

The committee ruled the pub is now not allowed to host live music or play recorded music until satisfactory soundproofing has been installed.

The complaint was raised by resident Michael Thompson, who kept a record of being disturbed by music from the pub at his flat and feeling ‘intimidated’ by crowds from the pub gathered near his door.

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Paul Maull, operations manager at the pub, said live bands would no longer perform and pledged to support Mr Thompson.

Mr Thompson said he had also faced abuse on social media over the concerns he raised.

He said: “It’s not a simple background noise, it’s booming in my flat. Vibrating through the chairs, the floor, the kitchen.

“I’ve had people messaging me, linking my photo, making me a target. It’s got to stop.”

Videos were also shown to the committee of people gathered outside his flat ‘smoking and littering’, and noted on some occasions there has been vomit outside his flat along with incidents of anti-social behaviour.

Mr Thompson’s worries were supported by resident John Winter, a nearby business owner, his landlord and the council’s environmental protection team, who conducted a site visit.

Planning conditions for the pub state no live music, karaoke or other amplified speech can be played or performed on the premises at any time, and the building should be adequately soundproofed.

They also state the pub must close by 11pm, which pub bosses stated they will stick by.

Mr Maull said since he was brought in by the company three weeks ago he has pledged to resolve any problems.

He said: “I would like to apologise to Mr Thompson and the experiences he had, I would also like to apologise to everybody else affected by clear shortfalls and shortcomings.

“The live entertainment and the misunderstanding between what acoustic is and what live entertainment is, that’s been cleared up and all of that has ceased.

“I can assure you there is absolutely no further bookings or intention of further bookings.”

He added the CCTV system has also been updated recently and noted it was the licensee’s first bar and lessons have been learnt.

Coun Mike Young, chair of the meeting, said they considered all evidence before putting the restrictions on the pub.

He said: “The licence holder must take steps to make sure patrons do not congregate outside the neighbour’s property.

“The sub-committee expects The 9 Anchors to take every step to ensure that they do not contribute to Mr Thompson being blamed in any way.”

Nic Marko , Local Democracy Reporting Service