A pub has been refused permission for a pavement licence for customers to eat and drink outside after complaints about noise and disturbance. The Jolly Sailor in West Looe had applied to Cornwall Council for the licence so that it could have tables outside.

The pub, which is said to be the oldest in Looe, had previously been granted permission for a pavement licence in August 2021 so that it could continue operating and serving customers whilst Covid-19 restrictions were in place. The Government had allowed pubs, restaurants and cafes to apply for pavement licences so that they could stay open whilst meeting social distancing requirements.

That licence expired at the end of September this year and an application to renew the licence was refused due to objections concerning obstruction of the highway. Another application was then submitted in October and went before Cornwall Council’s miscellaneous licensing committee today as an urgent item.

Councillors heard that there were concerns that during the time that a licence was in place several of the conditions had been breached. These included allowing enough space on the footway to allow people with physical disabilities and those with sight impairments to get past.

The licence holder, Gary Seymour, was also said to have breached conditions about not causing nuisance to neighbours; keeping the area clear of litter and keeping the area monitored to ensure compliance with conditions of the licence.

There had also been eight objections from members of the public to the application for a pavement licence with the main complaints regarding noise and disturbance from the pub’s outdoor area.

Under the licence conditions the pub was required to have furniture that was moveable and stackable so that it could be stored away when not in use. But the landlord’s representative said that there was nowhere for the furniture to be kept and so it remained outside.

He contended that there was sufficient room for people in wheelchairs to get by and said that there had been customers to the pub who use wheelchairs who were able to get in and out of the pub easily.

The committee heard that Mr and Mrs Seymour had not been eligible for government grants to help businesses during the Covid lockdown and said that they had been forced to take out “substantial loans” in order to keep the business going.

Members of the miscellaneous licensing committee agreed to refuse the application, but did not give their reasons for doing so. The council’s lawyer said that the applicants and objectors would be given the full reasons for refusal in writing.