Wanaka Sun       

Cork Bar late licence declined

Posted at 5:18am Thursday 20 Dec, 2018 | By Emma Conyngham newsdesk@thewanakasun.co.nz

Tullamore Springs Limited, known as “Cork Bar”, recently applied for the renewal of their on-licence however in addition, they also sought to increase their hours to trade from a 2.30am closing to 4am. The renewal was granted however the 4am closing was not.

Whilst Queenstown has a 4am closing, Wanaka currently operates with a 2.30am closing and there are very few people who want to see Wanaka become another Queenstown.

At the licence hearing, Senior Constable Ian Jeremy Henderson spoke in opposition to the 4am closing. He has been front line policing in Wanaka for 16 of his 33-year career. One of his current portfolios is the Alcohol Harm Prevention Officer for the Wanaka area. On receipt of the application, he checked with the two taxi companies in Wanaka to see whether there would be any service at around 4am, and was advised that there would be none. The taxi owners stated that they received the most racial and general abuse from customers when the bars were closing at around 2.30am.

Constable Henderson confirmed that in Wanaka there is no 24/7 service. The Police do not have the resources to cope with the closure of bars at 4am. Presently, the Police patrol until midnight on Mondays to Fridays, and to 3am on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Because the Police will not be sighted after 3am he submitted that there was a real chance that members of the public would drive while intoxicated after 4am.

Opposition was also received from health professionals and business owners also located on Helwick street.

The hearing panel report they were “underwhelmed by the application”.

The report continues: “Based on the presentation made by [company director] Mr Warnock we believe that he would be unsuitable to operate licenced premises between 2.30am and 4am. He gave no impression of understanding the impact that the lack of Police, taxi resources and security staff would have on keeping his patrons safe and getting them home without harm. Given that there is an increased risk with a later closing time, the Committee is entitled to expect an applicant to present a plan to cope with or ameliorate that risk. Mr Warnock presented no system or policy that might have assisted in reducing the type of risk that is associated with bars that operate until 4am.”



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