A bar in Weymouth has been ordered to temporarily close its doors after a Dorset Police investigation discovered allegations of criminality and safety issues for customers.

Actors Bar & Club on Maiden Street was issued with the closure notice by Dorset Council’s Licensing Sub-Committee following a licensing hearing on Friday 17 December 2021. The order states that the venue must close for 28 days with immediate effect pending a full hearing in January 2022.

Following reports from members of the public, an investigation was launched into the venue, which involved the specialist support of the Drug and Alcohol Harm Reduction Team working alongside neighbourhood policing team, response officers and CID, as well as partners from the local authority.

It is alleged that the operators of the venue consistently failed to uphold the licensing objectives and that crime was reported to have taken place at the premises, which risked the safety of members of the public.

Superintendent Dean O’Connor, of the Dorset Local Policing Area, said: “We are committed to working with our partners at Dorset Council and licensees in Weymouth to ensure that all venues operate correctly and within the law. We are tough on any alleged crime and will act swiftly and decisively with the aim of pursuing those suspected of being involved in high-harm crimes or if there is an allegation that criminality is occurring in venues that could put people at risk.

“We want people to be able to enjoy themselves in Weymouth, and more importantly, be safe. We will do all we can to work alongside our partner agencies to use all available powers to ensure this can happen.”

Linked to this investigation, officers from the Neighbourhood Exploitation Team and CID executed a warrant under the Misuse of Drugs Act at a local address on Friday 17 December 2021. A 37-year-old man from Weymouth has been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of controlled drugs – class A and a quantity of suspected cannabis has been seized.

The chair of the Licensing Sub-Committee Councillor Les Fry said: “Based on the evidence shown to us today by the police regarding the alleged illegal activity that has been potentially going on at Actors, we have taken swift and decisive action. Due to the seriousness of the investigation, we convened a meeting of the Licensing Sub-Committee to look at what steps we could take. It was decided that the licence should be suspended with immediate effect while we look fully at all the information and make a decision on the long-term licence. The action taken by the police and Licencing Sub-Committee shows the ongoing commitment we have to protecting those seeking to enjoy our night time economy.”

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