A Skegness hotel has had its alcohol premises licence revoked after a photograph from a Facebook account appeared to show a group of males sat in a large group drinking pints and posing for photos.
The picture which was taken in November at The Grosvenor House Hotel, North Parade, Skegnes is said to have tipped local police officers about the breach of trading activity.
The Alcohol Licensing Team from Lincolnshire Police then submitted paperwork for a Licence Review Hearing following a visit to the premises on 19 November 2020, where officers seized CCTV footage.
Once this footage had been examined the hotel was found to be open and trading – a move which was in contravention of the government closure order which started at midnight on 4 November 2020.
On Tuesday 19th January 2021 a digital hearing was held in front of Skegness District Council Licensing Sub-Committee. After hearing all the evidence they agreed with the police that this licenced premises had opened in breach of the regulations when other businesses were subject to closure.
Sergeant Kim Enderby, alcohol licensing manager for Lincolnshire Police, said: “Following that initial Facebook image being sent to my team we carried out a thorough investigation. We quickly attended the hotel and carried out a review of the CCTV hard drive.
“I thought after 29 years in the police there wasn’t a lot left to shock me but the way in which this venue was operating was awful. Nearly two weeks after the November lockdown had started we found footage of over fifteen people in the bar area.”
She added: ”They were being served pint after pint by the owner of the premises Mr Sparks. Obviously this hotel bar should have been closed; people should not have been allowed inside to drink alcohol. But of equal concern was the total lack of social distancing measures in place.
“At one point over ten men were crammed round a small table drinking and posing for what we think were the Facebook posts. There were no face masks being worn by customers or staff, nothing had been put in place to try and prevent the spread of the virus.”