Maggie's shut: Councillors could strip troubled Halifax town centre bar of its licence

Councillors will consider options which can include revoking the licences of a Halifax town centre nightclub and cocktail bar which are currently closed by order of the courts.
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Calderdale Council’s licensing sub-committee will review the licences of Maggie’s Bar and McFly’s, both on Commercial Street, when they meet on Wednesday, November 15.

The club and cocktail bar are both owned and managed by the same family, police papers submitted to West Yorkshire magistrates’ court in October said.

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The businesses have been closed since last month, with Maggie’s posting on Facebook last week that they were not opening following the deaths of 21-year-old Joshua Clark and 19-year-old Haidar Shah, who were stabbed in Halifax town centre in the early hours of October 1.

Maggie's in HalifaxMaggie's in Halifax
Maggie's in Halifax

On the same day of that post, police had issued an emergency closure notice for Maggie’s and went on to be granted an extension to that closure until November 18.

Magistrates were presented with police evidence of 36 incidents of note in 2022 and 25 – to the beginning of September – in 2023, the documents forming part of briefing papers to councillors.

Police applied to the court for the order because of concerns over serious nuisance, disorder, violence and criminal behaviour at the premises over that period, say the papers.

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Councillors are told the applications to review the licences are made by way of Section 67 of the Licensing Act 2003 where a magistrates’ court has made a closure under Section 80 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 and the relevant licensing authority has received notice of this under the act.

Options open to the councillors include modifying conditions of the licence either permanently or for a period not exceeding three months, excluding a licensable activity from the scope of the licence either permanently or for a period not exceeding three months, and removing the designated premises supervisor where evidence has been submitted which leads members to consider problems are the fault of poor management.

Other options include suspending the licence for a period not exceeding three months, or revoking the premises licence – which is needed for such premises to operate – entirely.