Dianne Peake, has worked in the area for 17 years ” at the hotel for 12 and as the general manager of the complex for the past year-and-a-half.
She spoke to the Courier this week to express her frustration at the way anti-social behaviour on the foreshore was often unfairly linked to the actions of the area’s licensees.
On Sunday night, an incident involving a brawl and alleged assault of a police officer on Kent Street was reported in a number of State and local media outlets as occurring at Rockingham Hotel.
While the incident happened near the hotel, Mrs Peake said there was no evidence linking the premises to the incident.
She said the hotel had been closed at the time of the incident, and off-duty security guards called an ambulance for a collapsed woman and apprehended at least one alleged offender.
She said the entertainment precinct had a bad rap.
‘Until those upmarket apartments went up, there may have been issues, but they were not publicised like they are these days,’ she said. ‘The people that turn their nose up at the look of the Rocky are some of the first to be fighting that nothing ever happens to the place for historical reasons.
‘Our staff are trained with RSAs (responsible service of alcohol), and we have more approved managers in the venue than required. I have a close-knit team of staff who understand the impact of anti-social behaviour, not only in our venue, but the foreshore area.’
Rockingham Police officer-in-charge Stuart Mearns said all venues that sold alcohol ” both take-away and in-house ” had a very important role to play in responsible service of alcohol, but people also had to take responsibility for their own actions.
‘Unfortunately alcohol is the scourge of policing, a vast majority of our work occurs because of alcohol abuse ” not just licensed premises but jobs in general,’ Senior Sergeant Mearns said.
‘It’s our officers that have to deal with the outcomes of that ” alcohol is no excuse for that kind of behaviour.’
See page 15 for the week’s crime news