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Controversial café license application faces backlash in Brent

A plan to open a new café in North London has been met with fierce opposition because of the ownership’s alleged ‘long history of flytipping and illegal parking’. One resident said the premises will be ‘a public nuisance’ if it is granted a licence.

Diana Hotel, a three-star guest house in Harlesden, has applied to Brent Council for a licence to open a new eatery next door on High Street. Paradise Café and Restaurant would open from 7am to 11pm Monday to Saturday and from 8am to 11pm on a Sunday, serving alcohol every day until 10.30pm.

The application is to be heard by the council’s alcohol and entertainment licensing sub-committee next month after it received an objection to the plans on the grounds of ‘public nuisance’. One resident claims the premises would be run by the same people as West Supermarket, which they allege has been causing problems in the area.

In a document sent to the council, the resident says: “West Supermarket has a long history of fly tipping plus illegal parking and it’s expected that Paradise Cafe will operate in the same manner.” They called on the council to investigate the supermarket and hotels “fly tipping history”.

The resident said CCTV footage from earlier this month would show a staff member “carrying several bags of black bag waste out of the shop to fly tip on the pavement”. They added a claim that “waste in unbranded bags” are regularly dumped outside Diana Hotel.

Despite the fines for dumping waste in Brent doubling from £200 to £400 back in 2016, the latest data showed there were 37,281 reported cases between January 2021 and January 2023.

Concerns were also raised about vans ‘parking illegally’ during deliveries, which the resident claims has happened outside West Supermarket. There is no parking or loading allowed at any time outside the premises due to the potential danger and obstruction of vehicles stopping on the busy road.

However, the resident said evidence was brought before the council last year that showed a delivery truck “parking dangerously” whilst goods were “dragged across the road” away from a pedestrian crossing.

Brent Council’s licensing inspector had originally made a representation against the application which outlined a series of conditions that would need to be met before it could be approved, however this was withdrawn when the applicant agreed to all of them. The conditions included installing CCTV, only serving alcohol to people eating a meal, and not selling high strength beers or ciders.

Diana Hotel’s agent was approached for comment but did not respond ahead of publication. Brent Council will review the application at next month’s sub-committee meeting (September 7) before making a decision on whether or not to approve the licence.