By James Atkinson

A publican's bid to relax a liquor licence condition requiring a 1am lockout at the venue has failed, with authorities acknowledging the plan faced "overwhelming opposition" from the local community.

The condition preventing new patrons from entering the premises after 1am was imposed in April 2008 by the former NSW Licensing Court on the Bradbury Inn Hotel in Campbelltown, south-western Sydney, when the court granted extended trading hours for the pub on a trial basis.

The publican recently applied to the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA) for the lockout condition to be varied to 3am on a 12-month trial basis.

Authority chairperson Chris Sidoti said that while liquor and gaming applications were not simply a 'popularity contest', "this application is notable for the absence of any significant local support… in favour of liberalising the lockout".

He said several residents in the pub's vicinity described liquor containers being left in the streets and late night disturbance from groups of drunk young people walking by their homes, as well as acts of vandalism to their property.

But he questioned whether all of these complaints were relevant to the pub's opening hours.

"The hotel's licence does not permit takeaway liquor sales after midnight… liberalising the lockout for the hotel's on premises liquor service between 1 and 3am need not exacerbate this problem," he said.

"The authority considers it likely that alcohol consumed on and off licensed premises can play a role in malicious damage incidents, but advice from police in this case suggests that the hotel should not be singled out as the source of this problem," Sidoti added.

But he accepted that residents may suffer increased noise disturbance from a 3am lockout, and noted that the venue had been designated a level 3 premises under the NSW scheme for the regulation of violence on the premises, having recorded eight violent incidents in a September 2011 assessment.

"That record is likely to worsen should the venue be open to receive patrons until 3 am," he said.

He ruled that the application to vary the 1am licence condition should be refused.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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