Review call after 'multiple' licence breaches alleged at Ipswich venue

Makani Cafe, Taket Street. Picture: SOPHIE BARNETT

Makani Cafe in Tacket Street is facing a council review into continuing the licence for the premises Picture: SOPHIE BARNETT - Credit: Archant

Four warning letters were sent to the Makani Café in Ipswich regarding alleged licence breaches that ranged from CCTV issues to not enough door supervisors, it has been revealed. 

Council officers have applied for a review of the premises licence held by the Tacket Street café, following "multiple incidents of breaches of the licence conditions".

A meeting is to be held next week to discuss the application to review the licence to operate on the grounds that the premises is failing to uphold the licensing objectives to prevent crime and disorder, to prevent public nuisance and to ensure public safety. 

Makani Café was first issued with a licence in February 2019, with the council report noting that the first warning letter was issued to owner Amr Mohammed in April of the same year. 

This was due to lack of CCTV and "carrying on licensable activities when not licensed to do so". 

In September 2019, an application was granted to remove the condition that required alcohol to be bought with food and to extend the hours to 2.30am on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. 

After this, however, claims of breaches continued involving alcohol consumption from people who were not seated and a DJ playing recorded music. 

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Further meetings were held in 2019 and another variation to the licence - allowing vertical drinking and DJ sets - was issued in November. 

That same month a police officer witnessed people in the venue after the approved hours and a CCTV check revealed that the system only recorded for three days - not the 30 required by licence conditions. 

It is also claimed that the door supervisor logbook showed that only one door supervisor had been employed on every occasion for the month of November 2019. 

The Covid-19 pandemic impacted Makani throughout 2020, but another warning letter was issued in May 2021 because no CCTV had been recording "for a period of time". 

Further issues with door supervisor numbers and CCTV storage were reported throughout 2021 and 2022.

The report for the council sub-committee concludes: "A graduated approach to enforcement at Makani has taken place including four warning letters and a meeting with the premises licence holder.  

"Despite these interventions, the premises licence holder continues to breach the licence." 

Amr Mohammed said he had no comment to make ahead of the meeting on April 26.