- Tower Hamlets
Police have closed three businesses on Upper Brockley Road, Lewisham, after magistrates granted a closure application.
Notices were served on Super Cuts off-licence, the Honey Pot restaurant and Gold Crest plumbers following repeated complaints from the community over the past three years relating to drug abuse offences and anti-social behaviour, the police said.
Bromley Magistrates Court granted the closure, which was requested by Lewisham police and Lewisham council, and ordered that the three premises remain closed for three months.
“I am really pleased that these stores have been closed,” said sixty-year-old David Makori, who has been living in the area for the past 17 years. “The crowd there was a bad influence on the younger kids. It will hopefully teach these people involved a lesson. I am expecting the overall environment to improve.”
On August 1, the police boarded up the premises with little protest from their users. For the next three months, those entering the premises without permission from the authorities will face arrest.
A spokesperson for Lewisham Council said: “These three premises have been the subject of many, many complaints by local residents deeply concerned by the anti-social behaviour emanating from them over a number of years, but you have to have evidence in order to go to court and secure an outcome.
“It is testament to the partnership of concerned local residents, and the evidence that they provided, the police and the council that these closure orders have been granted.”
The police and the council authorities said they had tried every possible approach to curb the problems before applying for the closure of the three places, including dialogue, visits and police operations.
“These premises were a magnet for anti-social behaviour and drug taking. Closing them for three months will bring some much needed peace and quiet to the residents of Brockley and the wider communities of Lewisham,” said Chief Superintendent Jeremy Burton, Borough Commander Lewisham.
Super Cuts was blamed for an unlicensed street party during the Jubilee that turned rowdy because of easy access to alcohol from the store. The party ended in panic when gunshots were fired and the police were called. Super Cuts’ owners argued that they did not organise the party.
The Honey Pot, Super Cuts’ neighbour, was raided by the police in July 2011 and a substantial amount of cannabis was seized from the premises.