Council propose late-night fee

Nottingham City Council targets students with draconian late night fine


Pub and club owners are opposing a move by Nottingham City Council that would see hundreds of small business owners forced to fork out over £4,000.

Nottingham City Council have proposed plans to introduce a late-night tax on any establishment serving alcohol after midnight. Public consultation started on the issue on Monday and pub owners are expected to make their feelings known.

The Tab sat down with Cllr. Rosemary Healy, one of the backers of the proposal. Whilst agreeing that some “small pubs” may have to close, she said that “it is the responsibility of all of us to make our city centre as safe as we can”. She was presumably addressing Trent students and locals who are responsible for several violent attacks in city centre clubs.

Nottingham_City_Council_logo

She stood by the work done by the City’s PCSOs and even suggested they were more than just someone to ask where the nearest cash point is. “Our community police have done a really excellent job in our community,” she said. “We can’t underestimate the vital role they play.”

PCSOs calling for backup since 2002

PCSOs – calling for backup since 2002

The charge will affect all establishments serving alcohol past midnight according to Cllr. Healy because “you can’t say one person coming out of one nightclub is more likely to cause a nuisance in a food outlet than another club.”

The charge is calculated by the council on the basis of the rent-able value of the property, meaning bigger venues like Ocean and Rock City will be hit harder than pokier venues like Coco Tang.

Clubs like the Big O may be forced to foot the highest bill

Clubs like the Big O may be forced to foot the highest bill

If the charge is approved by the council, 70% of the money taken will go to putting more coppers on the beat overnight and the rest going to provide three, presumably ineffective, night-time community officers.

Nottinghamshire police estimate the cost of policing the city centre between midnight and 6am to be somewhere in the region of £1.5m,  the same price as 1oo,ooo litres of frosty jacks, though undoubtedly less fun.

The measure is still being consulted on and Cllr. Healy said she would be open to  “taking alternatives to consider”.