Northampton Saints applies to serve booze until 2am - but only when there's no rugby

Franklin's Gardens are trying to extend their opening hours for non-rugby days.
Franklin's Gardens are trying to extend their opening hours for non-rugby days.

The home of Northampton Saints is trying to permanently extend its opening hours - but only for non-club events.

Franklin's Gardens has applied to the borough council to stretch its license hours until 2am for when it hosts events like weddings and live-music days.

It will also extend the grounds' alcohol licence over their car park and the Match Day Village.

Any objections to the plans must be submitted to Northampton Borough Council by August 28.

Graham Croucher, chairman of the St James Residents Association, said: "The community is cautious against these plans. Our concern is that it will be every week, with people spilling out of there drunk and causing a nuisance. It could lead to takeaways opening later.

"This may be unfounded and it could only be once a month."

Currently, Franklin's Gardens has to apply for one-off licenses to open late for weddings and non-rugby days.

A Saints spokesperson: "We are updating our licence to bring us into line with our operational requirements and development of the facilities at Franklin’s Gardens, taking into account non-club events such as charity dinners, weddings, etc, which may have necessitated a one-off licence, and this summer’s expansion of the Match Day Village. We continue to work positively and proactively with all relevant authorities."

The application comes after Franklin's Gardens announced it will cut its beer, burger and early bird ticket prices for the new season, and has doubled the size of its Match Day Village.