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Last week, East London club venue Oval Space had its license revoked due to safety issues following an alleged shooting on the club’s dancefloor in August.
In a meeting with a licensing sub-committee, Oval Space’s license was reviewed for the second time. A previous review followed a stabbing at the club in February 2020.
Minutes of the meeting in which informed the decision to revoke Oval Space’s license have since been released, which note that PC Mark Perry said: “the violence appears to have escalated and that the Premises are being poorly-run.”
PC Perry believes that the venue has an association with gangs claiming they had “taken-over” and that this was “not the first time the venue had done nothing.”
In papers submitted by PC Perry, other incidents are referred to, including a fight in July where one man “pulled out a Samurai sword” and the police were not called, nor was the incident reported, afterwards.
The minutes state that the sub-committees accepted PC Perry’s papers and that the venue is “known to and frequented by gangs means it is hard to break that association.”
It’s said that the sub-committee “considered that violence is not confined to late hours but can flare up at any time. Given this association with gangs, that risk is not one that can be safely discounted.”
The solicitor for Oval Space’s license holder Dean James rejected the allegation that the venue had been taken over by gangs. The minutes note: “Mr. James points to the failings of the security staff, the SubCommittee nonetheless takes account of the fact that he is a director of the business and ought to have had appropriate oversight, particularly in light of the history of the Premises.”
James did apologise to the sub-committee saying that the venue had resolved its problems since its last review however the sub-committee disagreed, saying that the venue won’t be “taking place despite the best efforts of the licence holder and staff. They have arisen because of failings on their part. The sub-committee is ultimately concerned with the safety of the wider public and we are satisfied that the only appropriate and proportionate action is to revoke the premises licence.”
The club has now had its license revoked and must cease operations as a venue.
Oval Space is planning to appeal the decision, RA reports.
Read the full minutes between the licensing sub-committee and Oval Space here.
Becky Buckle is Mixmag’s Video and Editorial Assistant, follow her on Twitter
Written by: Tim Hopkins