Penwortham bar boss demands answers over 'unfair' music licence decision - after new Arts Centre 300m away gets one

Lime Bar and Lounge
Lime Bar and Lounge
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Bosses at a Penwortham bar fighting a decision not to allow them a live music licence have hit out after a new arts centre less than 300m away was granted one.

Lime Bar and Lounge in Liverpool Road was told by South Ribble planning chiefs that extending its opening hours on a Friday night and hosting live music would “exacerbate the detrimental impact” of the business on nearby households.

Penwortham Arts Centre 'The Venue'

Penwortham Arts Centre 'The Venue'

>>>"We just want parity": read about the Lime Bar's fight here

Bosses have now spent thousands appointing a barrister to appeal the decision, which is set to go to a public hearing on November 5.

In the meantime, Penwortham Town Council-run The Venue, set to open in the former Penwortham Library Building, has been given the go-ahead for live performances.

Carol Riales said: “We were told we couldn’t have the licence because we’re near residential properties, and yet there is a house right next to The Venue. We feel it’s hypocritical.

“We were the catalyst for all these new applications for bars and restaurants in Liverpool Road, and while we’re really happy to see all this investment, we feel we’re being penalised.

“All we wanted was to have the opportunity to have an acoustic singer. We’ve even got special acoustic glass. An explanation needs to be given over this decision.”

Councillor Paul Foster, leader of South Ribble Council, said: "Our licensing team has considered both premises and have deemed the circumstances surrounding each are completely different.

"The two premises are in no way comparable and this is reflected in the fact that their licences are substantially different to one another.

“Penwortham Arts Centre – ‘The Venue’ is a community venue used for arts and crafts and small intimate live performances, licensed up until 10.30pm.

“Representations made from the public during the license application for both premises were also widely different. Zero objections were lodged in relation to Penwortham Arts Centre receiving a licence for live music.

“Our team followed the statutory guidance in granting this application – which states that if no objections are made by responsible authorities or members of the public, statutory government guidance is to grant the application as per the Licensing Act 2003.”

The Venue opens its doors to the public for the first time on September 27.