Drinkers face new curfew
By Jamie Brown
LISMORE'S late night pub crawl will be reduced to a standstill under changes designed to prevent alcohol-related violence in the city centre.
Under a compromise worked out between licensed clubs and pubs and new Lismore licensing officer Sergeant Wayne Crotty, drinkers will be locked out of establishments after 12.30am. Those already inside can stay there until closing time.
Lismore Liquor Accord secretary Phil Kelly said the move was designed to prevent migration between venues late at night.
Previously the curfew demanded drinkers settle in to their preferred drinking hole by 1.30am and Mr Kelly said the initial proposal by police aimed at bringing that back to midnight.
However, Mr Kelly said a lock-out too early in the night would have impacted on functions at registered clubs, sparking a rush to other venues.
Key to the curfew is the staggered closure of late-night traders The New Tattersalls and The Standard hotels which now close at 2.30am, and the One-Bar Nightclub which closes at 3.30am.
Joint One-Bar manager Scott Jones said the new rules would affect revenue to an extent, with the bar being forced to close 30 minutes earlier.
But he said the measures would be good for Lismore.
"Most customers are in the pub of their choice by curfew time anyway," he said.
"And staggered closing times will help prevent 500 people landing on the streets of Lismore at the one time."