Cheers for Penwortham bar as council looks at levelling up drinking times

A town centre bar looks to have won its fight for extended opening hours and patio heaters on the street outside.

By Brian Ellis
Tuesday, 26th April 2022, 5:05 pm

An application by No 16 On The Hill in Penwortham is expected to be approved when it comes before the South Ribble planning committee this week - despite some reservations from the council's environmental health department.

The bar, on the corner of Liverpool Road and Priory Lane, is the second in Penwortham to ask for its business hours to be brought in line with its drinks licence.

Close neighbours GinJarAle applied in February to have its opening times amended because of a bizarre anomaly in council policies.

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No 16 on the Hill could soon have longer opening hours.

Now No 16 has asked for levelling up so it too can have opening hours, set by the planning committee, that match its drinking times, set by the licensing committee.

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Calling time on the bizarre case of the Penwortham bar with different opening h...

The application has been recommended for approval by council officers when it goes before the planning body on Thursday.

While environmental health chiefs say they have no problem with the opening hours being brought into line, they had intended to object to heaters on the pavement in front of the venue. They were barred as one of the conditions when No 16 was originally given council planning approval in 2019.

GinJarAle successfully applied to amend its hours recently.

Officers felt they might encourage customers to spend more time outside, especially late in the evening, disrupting residents nearby. But a report to the committee says that "in the interests of consistency" they will not now be opposing it.

"The proposal has been considered by environmental health who confirm they have no issue with an extension in times internally, but would object to the removal or variation of the lighting/patio heaters condition," says the report.

"However, given that other bars in the area have successfully varied this condition through the planning appeal process, then, in the interests of consistency in the area, it is considered acceptable and the application is recommended for approval.

"Neighbouring properties were notified and a site notice posted with one letter of representation being received in support of the application, commenting that the new bars and restaurants in the area is having a positive impact."Some of the businesses in this area of Penwortham have different restrictions than those further into Penwortham and feel they all should be entitled to the same opening hours and agreements to improve outside seating areas.

"Penwortham is growing and thriving which impacts business and house prices which is a positive to all."

The town has seen a boom in hospitality businesses in the last few years with a number of bars and eateries springing up along Liverpool Road to take advantage of the opening of the Penwortham Bypass just over two years ago.

A significant reduction in traffic along the main street has encouraged a switch to “cafe culture” with many venues providing outside seating on the pavements.

The proposed extended opening hours mean No 16, owned by the Preston Pub Company, will be able to serve from 11am to 11:20pm on Monday to Thursday, 11am to 12:20am on Friday and Saturday and noon to 11:20pm on Sundays.

Outside seating must only be used between 11am and 8pm.