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Landlady defends family pub

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But complaints about Thatcham pub continue despite new licence restrictions

THE landlady of a Thatcham pub has defended her business, after neighbours accused her of breaching new licence restrictions just two weeks after they were imposed.

Black Horse landlady Beverley Barnaby (pictured) came under fire from West Berkshire Council because neighbours have been complaining for four years about excessive noise, violence, and threatening and anti-social behaviour emanating from the pub.

This week, Ms Barnaby said that any fighting at the Black Horse, St John's Road, was “no more than any other pub” and added: “It's a great pub because it has great customers and it has got a great atmosphere. It's welcoming and is family orientated – it's home from home.”

“We are doing everything we can to work with the residents.”

However, Stuart Harris, who lives in neighbouring Bath Road, accused the Black Horse of breaching the new restrictions – which included to stop serving alcohol by 11pm, close by 11.30pm, no entertainment after 11pm, ban customers smoking on the road outside, keep an incident log book, keep windows and doors closed during live music performances, and make sure that customers leave in an orderly fashion – just a fortnight after they were introduced.

He said that on Saturday, August 6, customers were seen leaving the pub at 12.30pm, an hour later than they were supposed to.

Mr Harris said that it caused the area to be “like Beirut”, and that in the mornings, he never knew whether he would wake up to smashed car windows or a broken fence.

“My advice would be to shut it down,” he said. “It is shocking. I would like to see more police here. It's having a detrimental impact on my life.”

Ms Barnaby has refuted the claims made by Mr Harris.

Thames Valley Police inspector Andy Ward, from the Thatcham and Pangbourne neighbourhood policing team, said: “The team will be monitoring the premises closely in the coming weeks and months to ensure that it complies with the conditions in the licensing review. Any breaches will be looked into.”

Anyone with any further concerns is asked to telephone Insp Ward on 0845 8 505 505 .

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