The fried chicken shop that is located at Guildhall Walk, was found to be serving clubbers after 3am, which Police have claimed “attracted trouble”. The owner has admitted the accusations.
As reported in the The News, the Portsmouth Licensing committee had heard how owner of Kens, Naseem Ahmed, had deliberately breached his conditions in order to ‘sustain business’. It is understood that Mr Ahmed was aware of the extension to the opening hours of Astoria and Zanzi nightclubs, which are both within close proximity to the take-away.
In the committee meeting, it was claimed that the owner Ahmed was “not naïve to the world of licensing”, and therefore should have been able to formally apply to extend his license, which is currently set at 11pm to 3am.
Previously, Mr. Ahmed had applied to extend his hours in 2011 but was rejected. He had been issued a warning notice in 2009 for a similar breach at other venues. According to The News, PC Pete Rackham said Ahmed had failed to act responsibly.
In his defence, Jon Wallsgrove of Blake Morgan LLP said: “This wasn’t driven out of greed and additional profits for Mr Ahmed.” “It was driven by the need to sustain a level of business.
“He knew applications were coming up to extend the licences at nightclubs Astoria and Zanzi, he talks to the other operators in Guildhall Walk and has a good relationship with Lyberry and Astoria.
“He knew what was around the corner and took the decision to open up later.’
“In having its license revoked, Mr Ahmed and his staff are likely to lose several student customers to rival takeaway establishments”
Kens is one of the most popular takeaway destinations for students and has several shops dotted around Portsmouth. The shop is known for selling fried chicken, kebabs and pizzas to drunk student revelers. In having its license revoked, Mr Ahmed and his staff are likely to lose several student customers to rival takeaway establishments.
In order to reopen fully, Mr. Ahmed has 21 days to appeal the decision. Kens can continue to trade in the meantime, however they are limited to the trading hours 5am- 11pm. They are also allowed to continue selling cold food into the small hours of the morning.