Buxton pub where drugs were sold is set to re-open

Beltane, Hall Bank, Buxton
Beltane, Hall Bank, Buxton

A Buxton pub, which had its licence suspended as part of a major police drugs operation, is to be allowed to re-open.

But, Beltane, on Hall Bank, is to undergo a complete transformation and be renamed before relaunching, a meeting heard on Monday.

On December 18, police applied for a review of the premises licence after an operation carried out between October 31 and November 28 when officers witnessed people being involved in the offering and/or sale of cocaine on the premises.

The interim suspension of the licence was granted by members of High Peak Borough Council’s licensing sub-committee on December 20, ahead of the full review which took place on Monday.

The meeting heard that the premises were owned by Christopher Graham, who leased them to tenants Crescent Venture. However, when the relationship between the directors of the company broke down, the licence for the premises was transferred to Linda Hill, who became the designated premises supervisor.

John Pritchard, who owns a neighbouring block of flats, told the meeting: “We have owned Crescent View for 25 years and we never had any problems until three years ago when Beltane took off.

“It has become a real problem to us in terms of noise. I didn’t realise how bad things were until some residents phoned me up to go up there on a Saturday night. It is completely unacceptable. We live closer to the King’s Head than to Beltane but we’ve never had any problem with the King’s Head at all.”

Solicitor Timothy Oaks on behalf of Mr Graham, said: “The old position is completely unacceptable and there must be a complete change for the future.

“Mr Graham for both personal and commercial reasons is determined to bring that change about.

“The premises have been closed for a month and the people who used to go there have found somewhere else to go.

“There will be a bigger focus on food and families with children. The old rowdies are not going to be made welcome or served.”

The panel agreed to remove Mrs Hill as supervisor and impose a number of additional conditions on the licence, including: there must be a minimum of two door supervisors on Friday and Saturday night and any night when there is live music for 30 days after re-opening; the creation of a licensed premises drugs policy to prevent entry of drugs into the premises and prevent drugs changing hands in the premises; and there is to be no karaoke at the premises.