The Cookstown businessman behind Teen Clubland said he has “recently de-licensed” Lanyon Hall to bring an underage event on August 19 in line with current laws.
Committed to ensuring the event is safe, Patrick Scullion - who also owns Time Bar and Venue - told the Mail the safety of their young patrons was “top priority”. He said the underage discos will be supervised by fully trained staff and that they will also “work closely” with the PSNI.
“The teenage events will not be held on licensed premises, as the premises have been recently de-licensed,” he explained.
“I am fully au fait with current NI licensing laws.
“Top of our priority list is to run a safe event in an unlicensed premises where alcohol can neither be consumed or purchased. We will have fully trained staff in attendance on these nights to ensure the events are run in a safe manner.
“We have the full support of the local PSNI in regards to the running of these events and we will continue to work closely with the local PSNI to ensure that these events are run successfully in regards to health and safety.”
Mr Scullion added that the first Teen Clubland disco at Lanyon Hall had originally been planned for July 22, but was postponed to accommodate the DJ’s schedule.
Police have issued warnings recently in relation to licensed premises which hold events for minors.
A PSNI spokesperson said: “Any venue found to be in breach of the licensing legislation has been, and will continue to be, robustly dealt with. In such instances, police will gather evidence and submit a file to the PPS.”
The Department for Communities is also clear about the situation on allowing minors into licensed areas.
“Current licensing law (Article 58 of the Licensing (NI) Order 1996) prohibits a young person under 18 years of age being present in any part of licensed premises which contains a bar or a part of the premises which is used mainly or exclusively for the sale and consumption of alcohol,” said a spokesperson.
In July 2014, the Glenavon Hotel in Cookstown was found to have committed an offence by holding teenage disco in its nightclub. It lost a subsequent appeal in July last year, after the Court of Appeal upheld the decision it had breached the laws regarding the presence of children on premises used to sell and consume alcohol.