More time given to object to re-opening of ‘ghastly’ bar

RESIDENTS opposed to the re-opening of a ‘ghastly’ Weston bar, shut down after a history of drug dealing and violence, will have longer to lodge their objections thanks to a licensing technicality.

Last week the Mercury revealed that Hotshotz in Meadow Street is planning to reopen under a new licence, being applied for by Wendy Johal, the wife of the former licence holder Kashmira Johal. It will be a joint venture with Piers Kelly, the previous manager of the bar.

The bar – labelled ‘ghastly’ by councillor John Crockford-Hawley when it was shut in December – had a reputation for drugs and violence. But Mrs Johal and Mr Kelly insist they can turn its image around.

Police were called to Hotshotz more than 60 times between January and November 2011. In one incident a woman was doused in petrol and in another a man was left in a coma for several weeks.

The deadline for objections to the bar has been extended until May 24 after it was revealed the publication meant to carry the public notice advertising the licence application, a legal requirement of the process, had not done so as expected.

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