There have been calls for drink promotions to be more tightly controlled after a 16-year-old “was allowed to drink as much alcohol as he liked” in a nightclub before getting violent outside.
A solicitor told the Youth Court in Londonderry how the boy drunk as much as he wanted after “he’d paid a £12 admission fee to enter a local nightclub”.
Keith Kyle said that as a result of the youth’s alcohol consumption he became involved in two disorderly behaviour incidents, both of which were recorded on CCTV.
The court was told that both incidents took place outside the Envy Nightclub which is located across the road from the city’s Strand Road police station, just after 2am on July 17.
The police were dispatched to the scene after the youth was recorded on police cameras acting aggressively outside the nightclub.
A public prosecution solicitor told District Judge Peter King that when the officers arrived at the scene the youth constantly shouted obscenities at them.
“He then walked away but returned to the scene a few minutes later and became involved in another disturbance by swinging his fists at people and pushing members of the public out of his way. He was then arrested for disorderly behaviour,” the prosecutor said.
The youth, who pleaded guilty to both charges, was ordered to complete 70 hours of community service.
DUP’s Foyle MLA Gary Middleton said drink promotions need to be subject to tighter controls.
“I have heard of ‘all you can eat’ restaurants but this takes things on to an entirely new level and it is clearly against government and medical recommendations of acceptable alcohol consumption,” he said.
“Charging an entrance fee but then allowing people to drink without limits will undoubtedly mean that people drink more than they would if they paid for each individual drink.
“The fact that this was an underage boy makes it even more serious and I would expect the police to investigate how someone this young was not only able to gain access to this club but was also served that amount of drink.
“Bar and club owners have a responsibility to ensure that every precaution possible has been taken to prevent underage people gaining access to their premises.”
Several attempts were made to contact the owner of Envy without success.