Business as usual at hotel

A POPULAR wedding venue has been granted permission to sell alcohol and play music including in a marquee, which currently has no planning permission.

The Casa hotel and restaurant, in Brighouse, was last night granted approval for the premises licence despite objections from Calderdale Council and West Yorkshire Police who were concerned about the noise and disturbance it would cause to nearby residents.

But councillors sitting on the council’s licensing committee said there was no evidence to support the objections for the licence submitted by owner Jack McDaid.

The business used to have a premises licence but because it was registered to a part of the company that was dissolved in February 2010 they have been operating without one. The discrepancy was brought to Mr McDaid’s attention in August this year and since then he has applied for six temporary event notices so he can continue trading, all without any objections.

Mr McDaid applied for a similar application to the one granted in 2005, but with one alteration, to play music from 6pm until midnight on Friday and Saturday nights in the marquee, a temporary structure.

Mr McDaid said it was an essential part of his business. “We have created this venue for weddings which we are very happy with. We have done the best part of 30 weddings this year and we have bookings for next year,” he said.

He told the committee he was willing to put in a condition to restrict the volume of the music played in the marquee that would be satisfactory for both his customers and the residents.

Objections were received from Environmental Health about the use of music in the marquee and from West Yorkshire Police.

Claire Marshall from the council’s planning department said an enforcement notice was served in February 2008 for the removal of the marquee within 12 months because of the unacceptable noise levels.

In May 2009 Mr McDaid was granted planning permission to build a conference centre in replace of the marquee and a car park on the opposite side of the hotel in Elland Road.

Twelve months later permission was refused to keep the temporary marquee for 20 months. And planning chiefs refused to consider a second application to retain the marquee for nine months.

A planning application is still pending to retain the marquee for a further six months. A decision that is expected at the end of October.

But Mr McDaid’s solicitor Mr Williams said there were no objections about the licence in relation to the hotel itself but that the licence for the marquee should also be granted. “I do find it strange that we have no evidence of complaints, no residents who have raised any complaints, the temporary events notices have gone through without objection and then when we try to regulate the position of the marquee there are so many objections from council officers.

“They are trying to run a hotel and they can’t do it without a licence.”

He said there had been no objections to the sale of alcohol in the marquee and despite past events being held in the marquee residents had not attended the meeting to raise their concerns.

Chair of the committee, Councillor Simon Young asked that the sound level be restricted during the hours and that the windows and doors remain closed. He said that the hours should be restricted to those stated and notices should be displayed asking visitors at the hotel to leave quietly.