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Willesden kebab shop loses High Court bid to stay open until 5am

PUBLISHED: 17:05 09 September 2015 | UPDATED: 17:05 09 September 2015

Woody Grill has lost its battle for a late night licence (pic credit: Google)

Woody Grill has lost its battle for a late night licence (pic credit: Google)

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A Willesden kebab shop has lost a High Court battle to be able to open stay open until 5am.

The company that owns Woody Grill in the High Road took its fight to the court after both Brent Council and the government planning inspector rejected its earlier bid.

The eatery, which opened in 2008 and owned by Gold Kebab Ltd, has been a favourite with fast-food fans but less popular with some residents in the area.

Cengiz Erpolat, who runs the shop, has applied to extend its opening hours no less than four times since it opened.

Mr Erpolat, who runs five Woody Grill restaurants with his brother, would not let the matter rest and appealed again to the High Court after his latest bid was rejected in February.

However, top judge, Mr Justice Cranston, has now told him the inspector’s decision was “unimpeachable”.

The shop must close at 11pm, with one extra hour allowed on Fridays and Saturdays.

Mr Erpolat had argued the shop provided an essential service to night shift workers and others looking for late night food and drink and there was no evidence of any complaints from local residents since it opened.

But the judge said the council had received letters, albeit one of them anonymous, which clearly amounted to objections.

One said the shop’s late opening was having “a negative impact on the peace and tranquility of the neighbourhood”.

The judge added that it was “apparent” that Woody Grill had regularly opened far beyond the permitted hours.

Mr Erpolat pointed out that the shop had been granted an entertainment licence, allowing it to stay open until 5am.

But the judge said that did not affect the planning position and dismissed Gold Kebab’s appeal. The company was ordered to pay almost £5,000 in legal costs.

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