Anger as primary school in Sudbury bids for alcohol licence

Pravin Ambhir, Ian Morland, Prakesh Suchdev, Vilas Chauhan,
Meera Chauhan, Ramesh Gadhia protesting

Pravin Ambhir, Ian Morland, Prakesh Suchdev, Vilas Chauhan, Meera Chauhan, Ramesh Gadhia protesting over late hour and alcohol licensing application at Subury primary school - . Photo by Adam Tiernan Thomas - Credit: Archant

Furious residents in Sudbury have launched a petition to stop their local primary school turning into a ‘nightclub’ after hours until 3am.

Sudbury Primary School in Watford Road has applied for a license to hold events and allow the consumption of alcohol in its premises much to the shock of neighbours nearby who were only alerted by a notice on a tree.

The primary school has applied for opening hours, including an alcohol licence, on Monday to Thursday 8am-12am, Friday and Saturday until 3am and Sunday until 2am.

Prakash Suchdev, who lives in Elms Lane, said: “I have 70 signatures in this vicinity already and I haven’t covered all the roads. The area is very diverse and not all people can read English. They were all totally shocked and prepared to sign apart from one 18-year-old who said ‘Now I know where to get booze I won’t sign it’.

“The hours they want to keep, promoting alcohol - this is not a nightclub which can open until these hours. This is a primary school, not a secondary where kids are more savvy.

“They already have a tannoy system that blares into our houses where we can hear whatever the school announces, now they want to allow this? If it goes ahead we’ll only get five hours sleep.

“It’s outrageous what they want to do.”

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Ian Phillips, the chairman of governors, said the proposals were in keeping with Brent Council’s licensing regulations.

He said: “Sudbury Hall, our main venue, is used for weddings and similar events and some customers want the option to consume alcohol during them. We do not sell or supply alcohol on our premises nor is it our intention to do so.

“This licence application, which has been made in consultation with, and follows the process required by Brent Licensing Department and current legislation is required to enable us to allow customers to make the most of their celebration, if they wish.

“We believe that we’ve done all we could to abide by the law while maintaining this important revenue stream for our school. Like every other state-funded educational establishment, we are living with the effects of cuts on a daily basis and need to maximise other sources of income.”

He added: “This will in no way impact the children. We are conscious of the impact on residents and we would seek to minimise it.”