Taxpayers’ £80k bill for 3am bar battle

EMRO hearing at Blackpool Town Hall.
EMRO hearing at Blackpool Town Hall.
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The controversial bid to close Blackpool’s pubs and clubs early cost the taxpayer almost £80,000 – with the vast amount of cash ending up in barristers’ pockets.

A Freedom of Information 
request by The Gazette showed Lancashire Police spent more than £58,000 on legal representation during the failed bid to introduce a 3am ban on alcohol sales in the town centre.

The process to consider an Early Morning Restriction Order (EMRO) also cost cash-strapped Blackpool Council almost £19,000 in terms of clerical and legal support.

Today, those who won the battle to prevent the EMRO from being brought in said the money would have been better spent on funding more police officers or night-time monitoring of the town’s CCTV system.

And political opponents have also cast doubt over the figures released by the police and council suggesting the real cost the process – factoring in manpower and research – was above six figures.