Northampton town centre pub with history of violent crime on premises has opening hours cut

The Bantam Pub has the highest density for violent crime in Northampton.
The Bantam Pub has the highest density for violent crime in Northampton.
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A Northampton landlord has been told to 'turn his business around' after his pub was found to have the highest density of violent crime for a bar in town.

Over 25 crimes involving the town centre pub, including 16 assaults and four incidents of grievous bodily harm, have been reported to the police in the past seven months, including a stabbing in April 2017.

A man was stabbed following a fight at the pub in April 2017.

A man was stabbed following a fight at the pub in April 2017.

A Northampton Borough Council hearing, which was held yesterday (May 23), pointed to the pub's 6am closing time as a factor in the crimes and ordered the landlord to close his bar earlier on weekends.

Councillor Tony Ansell, chair of the Licensing Sub-Committee, said: "I worry what is happening in this town, with such violent crime in the early morning. I wish we could turn back the clock. In my day, the bars closed at 10.30pm."

Ciaran Shanahan, owner of The Bantam Cock, in Abington Square, Northampton, was ordered to stop serving alcohol after 4am on Fridays and weekends and not to allow customers to enter or re-enter after 2.30am.

The pub, which has a capacity of 280 customers, must also install CCTV cameras to cover all entrances and must have at least three door staff on duty at a time.

The pub has been told to close an hour earlier on weekends.

The pub has been told to close an hour earlier on weekends.

Northamptonshire Police called for a licensing hearing into the Bantam Cock pub, in Abington Square, Northampton, after a man was stabbed in the back and chest when a fight spilt onto the street in April 2017.

Since the review was called, two more incidents of grievous bodily harm at the pub have been reported to the police.

The review heard that out of 28 incidents reported at the pub since September last year, half were violent in nature and nearly 70 per cent of them happened after 3am.

In other incidents at the Bantam Cock, a man was glassed in the face in a 'spontaneous attack' and doormen had to subdue a 'large, violent and very aggressive man' who later took five police officers to arrest.

After viewing CCTV footage from the pub, the hearing committee heavily criticised the door staff at the pub for 'doing nothing' and allowing offenders to escape following violent incidents. Mr Shanahan confirmed the door staff have since been replaced in recent months.

In summary, Councillor Ansell said: "This was a difficult decision for the committee to take. We do not want to damage your trade. We really do feel this is a fair result.

"I wish you very well in your business and hope you will take this chance to turn it around."

Mr Shanahan said: "It's a good result. It gives us an opportunity to improve. I don't think the new closing hours will affect business and hopefully it will have a positive effect."