Late night takeaway hours cut

VANDALISM, fighting, noise and litter caused by clubbers gathering outside a late-night takeaway may come to an end within a month following a decision to restrict its opening hours.

VANDALISM, fighting, noise and litter caused by clubbers gathering outside a late-night takeaway may come to an end within a month following a decision to restrict its opening hours.

Suffolk Coastal District Council's licensing and health committee met yesterday to discuss placing an early closing order on the Bodrum Grill in Undercliffe Road West, Felixstowe.

The Bodrum Grill has been the subject of much controversy since a previous closing order was overturned by its owner Mehmet Yalcin two years ago.

A legal loophole allowed Mr Yalcin to continue trading until 3am at weekends but yesterday, using a different piece of legislation, councillors were again able to restrict his trading hours.


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Residents told the committee how the takeaway acted "like a magnet" for hungry clubbers, describing the hordes of young people walking from the clubs to the takeaway as "ant trails."

They said unruly behaviour, swearing, vandalism, litter and people urinating and vomiting in their gardens were all commonplace.

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The council's solicitor, Ian De Prez, said: "This is a rather simple case that has been complicated by British licensing law."

He added: "These are very severe and very well-justified complaints and they present quite a shocking picture. What you hear about today is quite intolerable in a civilised society."

One resident who declined to be named said: "Unless you were actually there you probably wouldn't believe the standard of conduct that goes on in what is supposedly a quiet seaside resort."

He said the behaviour of these young people was "every bit as bad as these pictures you see coming out of resorts in Spain."

Police confirmed that gangs of up to 100 youths often gather outside the Bodrum Grill, blocking the roads and deliberately playing 'chicken' with passing drivers, refusing to move out of the way.

PC Clint Ablitt said when the clubs close people spill out on to the street, using the Bodrum Grill as an "extension to their night out".

He said he had witnessed "some of the most unsociable behaviour imaginable from young men and women" whilst patrolling the area.

Mr Yalcin set up the business as a takeaway and restaurant seven years ago and currently employs seven staff.

His solicitor, John Hughes, said that up to 40 per cent of the Bodrum Grill's trade came between the hours of 1am-3am and, if forced to close earlier, the business would become "financially unviable".

He said the takeaway had become a "landmark" for people when talking about noise and disturbance on the seafront and this had the effect of "giving the Bodrum Grill a bad name without justification."

After hearing all the evidence the committee recommended Mr Yalcin be ordered to close the Bodrum Grill no later than 1am every day.

Mr Yalcin has 28 days to lodge an appeal, during which time he can continue his current opening hours.

N What do you think? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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