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Licence bosses impose new licence restrictions on Haven Bar & Bistro in Lymington
9:10am Friday 13th December 2013 in News
ONE of the New Forest’s best known bar owners has been told to make major changes following a police probe.
Civic chiefs have attached a list of conditions to the alcohol licence held by Rob Smith, 53, who runs The Haven Bar & Bistro in Kings Saltern Road, Lymington.
It follows a meeting of the district council’s licensing subcommittee.
A police report presented to councillors said Mr Smith was rude “and appeared to be intoxicated” when officers visited the premises. It also alleged that the seafront bar later failed two test purchase operations by serving alcohol to people who were under-age.
Councillors could have revoked Mr Smith’s licence but decided to impose conditions demanded by the police.
They said he should install enough CCTV cameras to cover all public areas, maintain an incident book, log all refusals to sell alcohol, and train staff on preventing sales to under-18s.
Mr Smith said he had already agreed to the changes before the meeting. Referring to the allegation that he was rude and intoxicated, Mr Smith said he was off-duty and dining with friends at The Haven when police arrived at 10.15pm on a bank holiday weekend, when the bar was extremely busy.
He admitted that staff “made a mistake” when serving the people under-age but he said the two teenagers appeared in their mid-twenties and added: “In my view that’s entrapment.
“We’ve been open 12 years and weren’t in the habit of challenging anyone because we never get youngsters down here.”
Mr Smith made headlines last year after painting a Lymington post box gold after Sir Ben Ainslie won his fourth consecutive Olympic medal.
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