Friday, December 15, 2006

Marimba, South Wimbledon

Last night I chaired a Licensing Sub-Committee hearing into Marimba (formerly The Piano Lounge) in South Wimbledon, along with Cllr David Simpson and Cllr Judy Saunders. The hearing was a review of the licence borough by a local resident following a large amount of noise emanating from the premises over a long period. This was only the second licensing review hearing in Merton under the Licensing Act and the first that had been triggered by a local resident.

The hearing lasted over two hours and the end result was that Marimba had its Public Entertainment Licence removed as it has failed to comply with the original conditions as set out in the Operating Schedule. This had been agreed by Marimba back at the original licensing hearing in November 2005 when it was granted a licence by Merton Council to operate. This related to amplified music and insulation work (we received a letter on the day saying that the work had been completed that day) and the condition relating to a sound limiting system. By Maimba having its Public Entertainment Licence removed it will not longer be allowed to have live music, dj's, karaoke etc, only background music will be allowed as this is not a licensable activity.

In making a determination, it showed by Marimba not having complied with conditions in the licence, it had resulted in the removal of certain licensable activities i.e. public entertainment in this case. Any conditions that are imposed by licensing committee need to be adhered to by applicants and implemented.

While Marimba remains open and is allowed too serve alcohol and food, it will now have to make a new application for a Public Entertainment Licence to Merton Council and a Licensing Sub-Committee will hear this if objections are made. A right exists for them to appeal to the Magistrates Court, however it is likely that it would take a few months to be heard and I believe that Merton Council would have a very good case to defend if they take that path.


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