Hartlepool Council plans drinking hours change

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A Teesside town is considering calling time on late-night drinking in response to concerns regarding alcohol-related crime.

Hartlepool Council is consulting on plans to ban licensed premises serving alcohol beyond 02:00 GMT.

The change affecting 13 venues could be made under government legislation introduced in October.

An Early Morning Restriction Order (EMRO) could be in force by August following talks with Cleveland Police.

The council's principal trading standards and licensing officer Ian Harrison said disorder linked to alcohol was a "considerable drain" on police resources.

"Binge drinking and drinking to the point of fighting remains a significant attraction for a small number of people," he said.

Trevor Wilding, the chair of Hartlepool licensees, said he believed introducing EMROs could help the trade by encouraging customers to go to pubs earlier.

The consultation runs until 28 March.

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