'No' to late licence for Leeds bar

A Leeds bar has been halted in its attempts to extend its opening hours – much to the relief of local councillors and residents.

The Starlight Bar, on Harehills Lane, had an application to open until 4.30am on both Friday and Saturday nights – selling alcohol and playing music until 3am – rejected by Leeds City Council.

The result was welcomed by Coun Richard Brett (Lib Dem, Burmantofts and Richmond Hill), who said residents living in the vicinity had already suffered from noise and violence spilling out of the bar late at night.

An extension of opening hours would have been a "nightmare" for locals trying to sleep, he said.

The premises has been subject to an investigation by the city council's liaison and enforcement team because of complaints from the public.

West Yorkshire Police advised that the application be rejected, pointing to several instances of fights breaking out on the streets next to the bar and concerns about the fire safety of the premises.

Coun Brett said that the current plans for an extra-care housing scheme on the former Shaftesbury Public House site, which is opposite The Starlight Bar, would have been jeopardised if the application had been approved.

The housing scheme aims to bring much-needed homes and jobs to the area.

Coun Brett said: "I am thrilled that the application has been rejected. The noise from this bar can be heard by several hundred houses.

"This is not a city centre location, but is surrounded by family homes.

"Even if music in the club is minimised by soundproofing, the noise of shouting, taxi horns and doors being slammed can be heard from 200 yards away.

"If the application had been approved then sleepers would be disturbed at unacceptable hours right along Harehills Lane and down Brander Road into Gipton.

"The police are so concerned about youth drinking they want to introduce a ban on public drinking for this area. This licence would have completely contradicted their concerns about drinking in public."

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