Hotelier loses license after claiming drinkers were in his bubble

A hotel owner from Skegness has lost his license. After police that drinkers in his establishment were ‘in his bubble’.

Hotelier loses license after claiming drinkers were in his bubble: After customers posted Facebook photographs showing them enjoying an illegal lockdown drink In November police raided the hotel in Skegness. Russell Sparks, the owner, told police initially that the drinkers were ‘in his social bubble’. He changed his story when CCTV footage was seized that showed him working behind the bar.

The video showed him serving customers two week into the second national lockdown which shut down pubs. Fifteen men were seen enjoying the illegal drinking session. Lincolnshire Police’s licensing team have successfully applied for the hotel to lose it’s license to serve alcohol. Skegness District Council licensing sub-committee granted the ban on Tuesday leaving Sparks 21 days to appeal the decision.

The posted pictures on Facebook showed a group of men surrounded by empty glasses and a caption. “What lockdown?” followed by laughing emojis.

Licensing manager for Lincolnshire Police, Sergeant Kim Enderby, said. “I thought after 29 years in the police there wasn’t a lot left to shock me but the way in which this venue was operating was awful.” She went on to say. “Obviously this hotel bar should have been closed. People should not have been allowed inside to drink alcohol.”

But of equal concern was the total lack of social distancing measures in place. At one point over 10 men were crammed round a small table drinking. And posing for what we think were the Facebook posts. There were no face masks being worn by customers or staff, nothing had been put in place to try and prevent the spread of the virus.”

Sparks claimed it was an error of judgment on his part to open the bar. Finishing up Enderby said “The blatant disregard for both the closure order and social distancing measures demonstrates a lack of management and control over these premises


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