Children as young as 13 found lying unconscious on pavement outside pub

A popular pub and nightclub which hosted a drink and drug-fuelled under-18s disco has had its premises licence suspended for three months. Conwy Council and North Wales Police said they had serious concerns over children’s safety after the under-age disco on September 22 at Sonny’s Bar (also known as Sunny’s) and Bentley’s nightclub on Towyn Road, Towyn.

A licensing sub-committee hearing last week heard as many as 16 incidents involving drunkenness, fights, the threat of weapons and theft at the venue had been reported to the police since it opened in April, 2023. The sub-committee heard evidence that children as young as 13 were found lying unconscious on the pavement outside the pub after the disco, and two teenagers were taken to hospital.

Officers also had concerns about cocaine and ketamine use. At a hearing on Friday, December 8, CCTV footage was viewed behind closed doors as it was deemed too “distressing” to be shown publicly. Now, North Wales Live reports, the council has suspended the premises’ licence. You can get more story updates straight to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletters here.

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A council spokesperson said: “Following a review by Conwy Council ’s licensing authority sub-committee on the 8 December, the premises licence is to be suspended for a period of three months. The designated premises supervisor has been removed. Significant conditions have been added to protect children from harm. All the above are subject to appeal.”

Emma Priestley, owner of the venue’s operator, EJP Entertainment, apologised but blamed the venue’s now-sacked former manager. At Friday’s hearing, she said: “As a mother myself, obviously it was very disturbing to see the CCTV (footage). The protection of children is extremely high on my priorities.

“I did not know at all about the event. I was actually in hospital with my child at the time. If I had known, would it have taken place? Absolutely not. I have a 14-year-old child, and as a mother, I would do anything to protect my children. I would do anything to protect any children in that circumstance.

“It is not how we run our operations, and obviously I trusted the people to run these operations, and I have been very let down by certain people. Obviously, going forward I put myself down as the designated premises supervisor because I believe I can do that role effectively and efficiently. As a mum, it’s very important to me.”


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