A Cupar nightclub has been allowed to continue holding band nights for teenagers despite police concerns about underage drinking.
Councillors on Fife Licensing Board voted in favour of Jordans on Station Road hosting the events, which are targeted at youngsters aged 14 and above, but asked for a report on the premises in six months’ time.
Fife Constabulary objected on the grounds of “preventing crime and disorder and protecting children from harm”.
The force’s head of licensing Dougie Saunders said the premises had not followed police advice and closed the bar during the events. He said there was a risk that over-18s could purchase alcohol and give it to underage teenagers.
“There is a serious concern for us in having such a mixed age group at such an event in a licensed premises,” he said. “We’re supportive of the event taking place in these premises if no alcohol is on sale within the premises.”
Mr Saunders said other problems could arise from youngsters smuggling alcohol into the venue, stashing it outside or handing it through windows.
Licensee Annaline Webster said the nights had been held to help Cupar Youth Cafe and give young musicians the chance to play in a proper venue. She said the over-18s had to show photographic identification to obtain a wristband that permitted them to buy alcohol, and they could only buy one drink at a time.
Ms Webster also assured the board there were no windows in the premises and youngsters were not allowed to come and go, so they could not access any drinks stashed outside.
“The cost of putting on such a function for us is quite substantial. We always have door staff on. To make it more feasible we allowed the sale of alcohol to adults,” she said.
“We are very socially aware and would not want to put ourselves, our patrons or our licence in any danger.”
David Torrance, seconded by Bill Sangster, proposed a motion to grant the licence on the condition alcohol is not sold during the band nights.
However, Bob Eadie’s amendment to grant with a report in six months’ time, which was seconded by Lawrence Brown, was passed by five votes to three.
Mr Eadie said, “There is no evidence of wrongdoing on these premises so far and I think the board would much prefer to have these events in a regulated licensed premises and not in private houses.
“What I would say is that this is not a blank cheque for any licensed premises and there should be a report after six months.”