Covid-19: City centre nightclub shut down by council after breaching public health rules

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A Birmingham nightclub has been suspended from trading after it was revealed at council meeting that it had broken Covid-19 laws.

Councillors at yesterday afternoon’s Licensing Sub Committee meeting also agreed that Anton Gastparov, the designed premises supervisor of the Nakira nightclub, on Suffolk Street Queensway should be removed from his role immediately.

The meeting heard evidence from West Midlands Police about several breaches. Last Friday night, the venue stayed open well after the 10pm curfew, with 20 to 30 customers still inside until almost 1am. Social distancing was not being observed, and no food was being sold, which are the latest legal requirements for every hospitality business.

Credit: nakirabirmingham.co.uk

At 5am one night in August, police said the bar was crammed with 50 to 60 customers inside offering no ability for them to social distance, and another 15-20 outside. The committee heard the police were not informed of any request by the licensee to trade after 4am. At the time the manager argued that staff had been ‘carrying out maintenance work’.

Chair of the Licensing Sub Committee A, councillor Philip Davis, said businesses must follow the new Covid-19 public health guidelines because it is ‘a matter of life or death’. He also condemned the law-breaking behaviour, adding, ‘It is this kind of behaviour that has contributed to restrictions being placed on Birmingham to try and control the sharp rise in cases in the city.

All businesses have a responsibility – not only to their staff and customers – but to the wider community and there must be consequences when COVID-19 guidance is simply ignored.”

Nakira nightclub’s license will be reviewed in 28 days.

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