Outdoor New Year’s Eve party saved at Tewkesbury's The Black Bear pub

The results of a premises license review for Ye Olde Black Bear in Tewkesbury are in and it's good news for fans of the historic pub with live music still allowed — within new limits.

By Emma Luther  |  Published
A premises license review for Ye Olde Black Bear in Tewkesbury took place last week.

Since it reopened in June 2023, Tewkesbury's historic The Black Bear pub has attracted a growing fanbase for its stylish setting and community focused line-up of events and live music.

But it also provoked anger from local residents who complained to Tewkesbury Borough Council about noise and disturbance.

After a petition to protect the pub and licensing committee review last week, the council has chosen compromise as the way forward to keep live music alive at the pub, while striking a balance to protect nearby residents.

In a post on the council's website, officials said: 'We received many responses to our consultation on the review — including those made by residents who live close to the pub and are affected by its operations, as well as people who were opposed to the review.

'Our licensing committee carefully considered these views and the evidence provided, as well as the premises’ owner’s desire to foster the musical creativity of the Tewkesbury community to run a viable and successful business.'

The committee's verdict is a modified premises’ licence which means outdoor amplified music is limited to 32 days per year and must end by 10.30pm on Fridays and Saturdays and by 9.30pm on Sundays.

Live and recorded music played in any outdoor area must not exceed two hours on Fridays and Sundays, and should be no longer than four hours on Saturdays.

The exception is New Year’s Eve when live and recorded music is allowed in any outdoor area until 12.30am the following morning.

The pub has to install a noise-limiting device for whenever live or recorded music is played inside the premises and the pub garden must be cleared of customers by 10.30pm each night — except for the use of the designated smoking areas.

Owner Luke Haynes dedicated six years to an extensive restoration project and has been committed to ensuring The Black Bear is put back at the centre of the local community.

In the licencing review decision notice, the committee acknowledged the time and effort he has invested in restoring the premises and the fact he wants the pub to celebrate the musical creativity of the community of Tewkesbury.

Built in 1308, The Black Bear is thought to be the UK's oldest pub.

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