Councillors block new bar in Greenwich

Greenwich Council’s licensing committee have blocked an attempt to open a bar beside the Thames in Greenwich.

The applicant sought to open at a commercial unit at the River Gardens development.

It’s not a huge surprise as the council had previously blocked a micro brewery opening at another commercial space nearby.

Previous plans nearby by another applicant were blocked

In terms of mitigation measures, the applicant John Quy stated that:

  • A security agency was to be hired. The premises would offer a low alcohol menu. Some zero alcohol drinks sold.
  • CCTV was being looked into
  • A bike rack was also being looked into, and the installation of plant pots to avoid loitering and to separate customers from the gated playground.
  • It was proposed to install noise insulating material in premises and to close all doors when amplified music was playing.
  • Outside the premises was to be a non-smoking area.
River Gardens was built over the previous decade

He had sought to open until 11pm Monday to Thursday, 12:30am on Friday and Saturday and 10:30pm on Sunday.

Met Police objected highlighting:

  • Long term issues for residents were anticipated as the premises were just outside of a cumulative impact zone.
  • Concerns were expressed in respect of the noise from amplified music, and that amplified music causes raised voices.

Greenwich Council’s Environmental Health Officer also opposed stating:

  • Concerns were raised in respect of the sound proofing to be installed. It was presented that despite this, residents directly above would hear vibration.
  • People in smoking area outside talking loudly was a concern.
  • Concerns were raised in respect of customers smoking and talking loudly in the area as nights progressed, and of large droves of people walking in and around premises.
  • The impact of the volume Uber drivers in the late hours was referred to.
  • Concern about there being a children’s play area near the premises. The power point showed this was adjacent to the premises.

In a letter, a council officer stated a 10 minute walk to the nearest station (Maze Hill) or five minutes to the nearest bus stop was a “considerable distance” and is likely to result in clients leaving by taxi.

Councillor Maisie Richards Cottell also made representations on behalf of 9 residents.

A number of residents including one living above the site opposed listing proximity to a playground and noise.

The committee stated in their refusal:

“The LSC in particular considered 4.6 – 4.20 of the Policy and were not satisfied that the Prevention of Crime and Disorder objective is met.

John Quy appeared not to be fully familiar with the application he had made i.e. covers and drinking outside in external area. John Quy also did not appear to be aware of the conditions that could have been attached to the licence if it had been granted.”




Running a site takes much time and cost a lot of money. Adverts are far from enough to cover it and my rent.

You can support me and the running this site in a number of ways including Paypal here

Another option is via Patreon by clicking here

You can also buy me a beer/coffee at Ko-fi here

There's also a Facebook page for the site here

Many thanks

J Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

    7 thoughts on “Councillors block new bar in Greenwich

    • While some concerns may be justified others here are laughable and help explain why London nightlife is dying. How on earth is a five minute walk to buses a considerable distance? The Met opposing everything again for an easy life I note as well. They’d shut everywhere if they could and to hell with the economic impact.

      Being near a playground as a reason to block is just funny. Go to many other citys in Europe and bars are common near playgrounds. No one freaks out. What matters here was the type of bar it would be. If a micropub then hardly going to be a rowdy place and given the early closing it didn’t seem like a place to get smashed. Confused why some people move to a new build in a big city like London at such a site with empty units then complain when someone wants to run a bar in one. As for what this says about Greenwich wanting to invigorate a night time economy…

    • Greenwich council & the met really are a joke. Let’s all just live in a soulless ghost town and be done with it.

      Greenwich is desperate for new independent restaurants and/or bars instead of the samey chain garbage we’re stuck with.

      But no, let’s just fill every scrap of land with bland towers, pack as many people in those shoeboxes as possible and deny a bit of light relief in a bar or two.

    • Laughable indeed. Yet the same Greenwich Council want to increase nightlife in Woolwich with late night events etc. Although Woolwich is rife with antisocial behaviour and crime. I know as I have been a Woolwich resident all my life..
      What will happen to these empty commercial units which will probably now remain empty for years. Like other empty commercial units around the Borough on new developments. Residents on new developments need a restaurant or bar where they can go to relax and meet up with neighbours and friends for a few hours.

    • Given your comment I assume you have never been to this location. It is literally a residential building and area. The bar there would be totally incongruent and the noise would affect hundreds of flats. I would agree if it were the town centre but this is somewhere people have chosen to live specifically because it’s very quiet. Multiple nurseries and playgrounds next door. The walk distance isn’t long but the bar isn’t on the road so Ubers would have to wait in the small residential road nearby that would immediately block access. Again, if you had seen it you’d agree

    • Totally insane, this is a bar not a nightclub – there is a pub just a few minutes away, why not another one?
      This development is souless and would benefit hugely from a pub, as they have done over in West Silver Town and countless other residential properties, nothing some sound proofing wouldn’t fix.

      The playground reference is hilarious, you only have to look to Portugal where playgrounds have kiosk bars in them selling beer to adults whilst they watch their children. Another classic decision from councillors who actively don’t have the qualifications or knowledge to do their jobs. If only councillors were hired rather than elected maybe they’d have the skills to actually serve the people.

    • Hi John. That doesn’t seem quite right – the area is ‘residential’ but pubs and bars exist in residential areas for residents to go to. The operating hours do not suggest a late night nightclub type venue. Those buildings were built with commercial units at the base and given the prime leisure location by the river, the only likely realistic use for those would be a cafe, restaurant or bar. Given the distance from the main commercial part of Greenwich, any business there would need to be a ‘destination ‘ venue rather than one relying on passing trade. Which again makes it more likely to be a bar or restaurant. Either that or something completely unrelated to the location that trades mostly online – but doubtful they’d want to pay prime Riverside rent!

    • Greenwich is the 15 minute city of coffee shops…

      Another useless council decision


    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.