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New private members club is given go ahead for Oxford Street in Southampton
A NEW private members club is set to open in the heart of Southampton.
Permission has been granted to set up the club in a basement underneath Oxfords bar and restaurant in Oxford Street. But a bid to keep the club open until 2.30am was knocked back – instead, city councillors decided that it would not be able to open after 2am.
Owner Simon Foderingham applied to the council earlier this year for permission to change the use of his basements and add new access.
Planning permission had originally been granted for a private members club in 1999 but it was not taken up.
The venue will cater for up to 100 people and will provide members with a chance to meet up, have a drink and enjoy music performances.
It will also be able to host a variety of functions, including charity events and wine-tasting evenings.
Mr Foderingham had applied to open between 10am and 2.30am, seven days a week, but city council officers recommended that the closing time be restricted to midnight. But at a meeting of the council’s planning panel, he urged members of the committee to allow him to open until 2.30am.
Addressing them, he said: “By the very nature of what we are introducing, midnight is not practicable.
“People will pay to join something that is very different to anything else in Southampton. There is very little trouble in Oxford Street so I don’t think that’s an issue, and from what I understand no objections were raised to this from residents or businesses.”
He received support from many of the panel members, including Conservative Les Harris, who said: “I’m bemused by having to have this at the panel meeting, because if you are talking about the night-time economy it’s got to go beyond midnight and having lots of properties around there with late licences, if we restrict it to midnight we could put this club out of business.”
The panel voted to allow the new club to open until 2am, but after the meeting Mr Foderingham said: “I don’t think they really understood it.
“We asked for a 2am drinks licence as no more drink would be served after 2am and people traditionally would be given another 20 to 30 minutes to leave, so they haven’t achieved that.”
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