Former Brentwood venue could see return of late-night revellers

A Brentwood high street premises that had its licence revoked following a mass brawl could see a return of late-night revellers into the early hours.

An application has been submitted to Brentwood Council for the Sports Lounge at 40 High Street to be allowed to open until as late as 3am.

A previous premises licence operated by Bloc40 had been revoked by the council in September last year after a ‘mass brawl’ at the premises during a 14th birthday party around three months earlier in June.

However, planning permission had never been given for the former Brentwood snooker hall to turn into a high street nightclub.

Brentwood Borough Council refused a retrospective change of use from Bloc40 from the former snooker hall into a nightclub in January 2023.

It had six months to lodge an appeal with the planning inspectorate against the decision but never did.

A planning report decision at the time said: “Notwithstanding the issue of a premises licence, the nightclub is not acceptable in this location because of the harm it will cause to nearby residents and other users of this part of the high street arising from noise, disturbance and anti-social behaviour from comings and goings arising from its use, and especially from the first-floor rear terrace area, in conflict with local plan policy PC09.”

If successful the first floor venue could play music as late as 3pm. However, the applicant has been willing to ensure there will be no playing of music by DJs.

They also want to change the internal layout of the premises reducing its capacity.

The application comes about six months after the council revoked Bloc40’s licence following a serious incident on June 16 when violence broke out at a private party for a child’s birthday due to finish at 9pm.

CCTV footage showed a number of teenage boys jumping over the bar in order to obtain bottles of spirits to use as weapons.

The fight then spilt out of the premises and into the High Street, with no visible attempt to restore order to safeguard the children not directly involved in the brawl.

Representations must be received within the 28-day consultation period, which ends at midnight on April 18.

Piers Meyler

Local Democracy Reporter