Richmond town has a lively evening economy with many restaurants, pubs and bars, theatres and cinemas. The town has residents, licensed premises and open spaces in close proximity to each other which means there can be stress on the balance of use. As with most towns anti-social behaviour is an issue but due to the long term continued efforts of the Society and others its control has been maintained. But particular issues and a general reduction in anti-social behaviour will continue to be of major concern and involve the Society.
The Society recognises the benefits of the evening economy for residents, visitors and businesses but seeks to discourage the negative impact on the quality of life that can arise from excessive consumption of alcohol and disturbance late at night.
The Society supports the local authority’s licensing policies and enforcement of these by the council and police. It examines most applications for licences involving entertainment, alcohol and street trading. The Society welcomes discussion with licence applicants pre-application so as to accommodate their ambitions but where it considers it necessary the Society does oppose licences or seek appropriate conditions and on occasion has sought licence reviews. Some of the borough’s key licensing policies, such as the Richmond cumulative impact policy, were initiated by the Society.
The Society is not in favour in general of adding bar capacity or extending opening hours. The Society actively supports residents in dealing with licensing issues. The Society is represented on the local police liaison group.
Over the last fifteen years the Society has dealt with over 200 licence cases and successfully helped maintain a balanced evening economy for the benefit of residents and visitors.