Police find customers hiding in cupboards in Yorkshire pub flouting lockdown restrictions

Police were called to a pub after a tip-off that the venue was still serving, despite lockdown restrictions - and were stunned to find customers hiding inside cupboards.

Wednesday, 29th April 2020, 4:10 pm
Updated Wednesday, 29th April 2020, 4:12 pm
The Pitsmoor Hotel in Sheffield was flouting restrictions - with customers hiding in cupboards

South Yorkshire Police served a prohibition notice on The Pitsmoor Hotel on Pitsmoor Road in Sheffield.

The Pitsmoor Hotel on Pitsmoor Road was brought to the attention of licensing teams by members of the public who had reported it was still serving customers.

The new Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 were announced by the Government earlier this month.

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Under this new legislation local authorities and the police can close premises that are flouting the closure ban.

John O’Malley, Liquor Licensing Manager at South Yorkshire Police, said: “On Friday night, officers attended the premises and found a number of people hiding in cupboards, the pub was clearly still open for business.

“What makes this more significant, is that the license holder has already been served a prohibition notice under the legislation for another premise, The Staffordshire Arms on Sorby Street.

“Licenses for both venues are now under review by ourselves and Sheffield City Council, so there could be long-term implications for these businesses.

“Right across South Yorkshire we have seen fantastic support, compliance and respect for the restrictions from our licensed premises. “I want responsible businesses to see that we are taking enforcement action when it comes to venues who are flouting the rules and ultimately putting lives at risk. “I’d also like to thank the public for being vigilant and reporting their concerns.”

Cllr Bob Johnson, Cabinet Member for Transport and Development at Sheffield City Council, said: "These restrictions are in place to protect everyone from the spread of coronavirus.

"Hundreds of people are still dying in the UK amidst this pandemic and whilst I am heartened by the sacrifices the vast majority of individuals and responsible businesses are making during this lockdown period, it seems some appear to believe they can ignore the regulations and in doing so risk spreading the virus.

"In these cases, as we have shown here, we will follow up on complaints and take firm action. "This license holder has ignored the restrictions, despite having another premises shut down, and may now face additional consequences around the future of these licenses. "We ask members of the public to continue reporting their concerns so that we can protect our NHS and protect lives."

Details of the Government's guidance is here People can report these issues seven days a week by emailing: [email protected]

Alternatively they can ring the citizens advice bureau who work closely with councils on consumer protection issues, Monday to Friday on 0808 2231133.

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