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Police accuse banned pub of playing ‘games’ after applying for licence to be restored

20 Mar 2024 3 minute read
Sunny’s Café and Bar. Photo via Google

Richard Evans, local democracy reporter

Police have accused a pub which had its licence suspended late last year of ‘playing clever games’ after  an application was submitted for it to be allowed to reopen.

Sunny’s Bar on Towyn Road had its licence suspended in December for three months after the pub was accused of holding a drink and drug-fuelled under-age disco on 22 September 2023.

According to North Wales Police, children were lying drunk on the pavement outside the pub whilst there were suspicions of ketamine and cocaine consumption.

Consequently, the pub agreed to having its licence suspended after a 21-day appeal period, meaning the pub’s licence was suspended until 23:59 on 2 April.

Temporary event notice

But EJP Entertainment, who run Sunny’s Bar, applied for a temporary event notice, allowing the pub to open and sell alcohol between 27 March and 2 April, which would effectively end the ban early before the busy bank holiday Easter weekend.

The licensing committee met at Conwy’s Bodlondeb HQ and now has five days to consider the application.

But North Wales Police’s licensing officer Aaron Haggas spoke at the hearing and slammed EJP.

Mr Haggas said the pub was attempting to ‘play clever games’ and circumnavigate the ban.

“There is nothing to indicate that this is a separate application, other than an opportunity to try to circumnavigate the suspended licence through nothing more than what can be called kidology,” he said.

“It does bring into question the trust and confidence of the applicant and may well also call into question the action taken by the licensing authority.”

He added: “We will be very disappointed should this application be approved.”


But representing EJP Entertainment, solicitor Joe Harvey said the pub had put in a range of measures to improve the pub’s running, including security and licensing courses for staff above and beyond requirements, to ensure employees were well trained.

“We would say there has been a lot of effort on our part to try and repair things, and it is disappointing to hear that this is perhaps felt by North Wales Police that that isn’t going as well as what we thought it was going because we want to put things right,” he said.

“And we made a big point of it during the review that EJP have a number of premises, and we have to have a relationship with North Wales Police. We have to have a relationship with the licensing authority, and we want that relationship to be a good one.”

He added: “It was hoped that by retaining the services of someone like me that there is an element of ensuring things are done properly. It is very disappointing to hear that there is a belief that things aren’t being done properly, and it is difficult to hear suggestions that we are playing clever games or we are attempting to circumnavigate the suspension of the licence.”

The licensing committee has five days to decide.

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