Town of Cottesloe won’t comment on extension of Cottesloe Beach Hotel hours until it knows opinions of residents

Town of Cottesloe won’t comment on extension of  Cottesloe Beach Hotel hours until it knows opinions of residents

COTTESLOE Council will not comment to the Department of Liquor and Gaming on proposed longer trading hours at the Cottesloe Beach Hotel (CBH) because it does not know the opinions of all its residents.

“It’s difficult to put in a submission when we’ve had no public consultation,” Mayor Jo Dawkins said at Tuesday’s meeting.

Comment was due today about hotel owner Prendiville Group potentially extending its current 10pm closing time to 11pm from Sunday to Tuesdays, and midnight during Wednesdays to Saturdays.

The extension is proposed for the hotel’s previously notorious former beer garden, whose youthful crowd caused decades of residents’ complains to the Council about issues including noise, street drunkeness and after-hours drinking.

The garden has been redeveloped by Prendiville Group as the upmarket Beach Club to be pitched to an older clientele.

Mrs Dawkins said it was inconsistent that the CBH should have one set of closing times while the nearby Ocean Beach Hotel had another.

She said Prendiville Group had spent time and money turning the “unattractive” beer garden into “something attractive of which town can be proud”.

However, councillors Sandra Boulter and Sally Pyvis questioned whether the council should not send a submission.

“We do represent all the community, and we haven’t heard from those who may object to the proposal,” Cr Pyvis said.

Cr Boulter wanted the council to defer considering not sending a submission until ratepayers’ opinions had been gathered, but council staff said the Department of Liquor and Gaming was “very strict” about its deadlines.

Prendivile Group director Tony Dichiera said new hours at the “upmarket” Beach Club would be no greater than any other “suburban pub”, and the hotel had banned closing time over-the-counter sales of alcohol as part of its bid to achieve good relations with its neighbours.

“The fact is the hotel is not about people getting smashed anymore,” ratepayer Jane Wishall said.

Adjacent Warnham Road resident Laurie Scanlan said later closing times would allow for the serving of meals after 9pm on the beach strip on Sundays.

“We don’t have the problems now of crowds and unruly behaviour, and the hotel has been well-managed, and the Cottesloe beachfront is now a busy coastal commercial and entertainment district,” Cottesloe MLA Colin Barnett said, when asked about the hours’ extension .