A number of pubs and clubs will be forced to close early as a late night levy is to be imposed on Nottingham establishments that remain open past midnight.
An estimated £1.5 million per year is being spent by Nottinghamshire Police to deal with late night revellers.
To combat the growing demand for night-time policing a late night levy is being imposed on Nottingham’s night-life. The money, which will be split between Nottinghamshire Police and the City Council, will fund two community protection officers to work in the city centre.
“The businesses that benefit from the extra service should be paying for it”
Starting from November this year, the levy will see pubs charged between £200 to £4,440 a year to stay open between midnight and 6am.
Nottingham’s Crime and Drugs Partnership director, Peter Moyes, stated that the “average business is going to be paying between £2 and £3 a night to stay open”.
Although nine businesses will have to pay up to £12.16 per night, Peter Moyes further said that “the businesses that benefit from the extra service should be paying for it” and that the “contribution is not going to be the death knell of those businesses”.
“It’s unjustified… it’s an unnecessary expense”
Amy Wilcockson, a first year English student, told Impact that “there have been instances with late-night drunkenness in Nottingham to justify such a levy”.
The City Council have already received 80 applications from establishments wishing to change their licenses to avoid paying the charge, with an estimated 20 per cent of premises in the city altering their licenses. After consulting on the plans, 74 per cent of businesses and individuals said they disagree with the new levy.
“In the grand scheme of things £3 a night is nothing compared to the money they make in a night”
The Company Inn, a Wetherspoons owned bar, has already begun the process of altering its license to avoid paying the levy. Manager Ben Reader feels that he has not seen enough police presence around the Castle Wharf area to justify paying the levy, stating that it is an “unnecessary expense”.
Curtis Daher, a second year Industrial Economics student, told Impact that “in the grand scheme of things £3 a night is nothing compared to the money they make in a night”.
Similarly, Idin Sabhaipour, a second year Law student, stated that “the levy was fair as those who will see the benefit, both the bars and those at the bars, are those paying for it”.
The levy will be introduced in the city centre from November.
Connor Higgs and Anastasia Yapp
Image: Kamal Hamid via flickr