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Man was punched and woman hit with bottle of Prosecco at The Cricketers in Rainham High Street

Restrictions have been placed on a Medway pub after a “melee” which saw a man punched unconscious and a woman struck by a glass bottle of Prosecco.

The Cricketers in Rainham High Street can now only trade up until 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays as part of interim steps imposed by Medway Council following a series of incidents.

An emergency licensing hearing panel meeting was held last week as Kent Police said “there is a risk of serious crime and disorder recurring at these premises” until action is taken.

The Cricketers, Rainham High Street. Picture: Google Streetview (3421395)
The Cricketers, Rainham High Street. Picture: Google Streetview (3421395)

The latest problem night at the Greene King pub took place in the early hours of Saturday, July 21 while a disco was being held on a makeshift dancefloor.

A group of men are said to have assaulted “at least three separate people” – two of whom were punched and kicked to the floor inside the pub, while another man was punched to the ground and knocked unconscious outside.

Meanwhile, a woman inside the pub and not linked to the violent disturbance was hit on the head by a glass bottle of Prosecco thrown during what Kent Police described as a “melee”.

Officers are continuing to investigate the incident.

Meeting minutes published on Wednesday (August 1) read: “PC Chris Hill said the CCTV footage of the incident on July 21 showed that although the three door staff on duty had worked hard, there had been an insufficient number of them to deal with the level of disturbance."

Previous incidents at the pub were reported in February 2018 – which led to a restriction on the use of glass, and an increase in door staff numbers – and during this summer’s World Cup.

Police called for the designated premises supervisor (DPS) to be removed as part of the interim steps, although Greene King says the process is already under way.

In the meeting minutes, a representative said the chain had already “identified a number of experienced individuals” for the post.

Bottle of prosecco. Getty Images (3423322)
Bottle of prosecco. Getty Images (3423322)

The notes continue: “On behalf of the premises licence holder, Ms Jung emphasised Greene King’s experience in operating licensed premises in a professional manner and expressed their regret that this incident had occurred.

“The Cricketers was a large, well-run family-friendly public house. The disco that was held on Friday and Saturday evenings did not play the type of music that was conducive to violent behaviour.”

Greene King also said those involved in the incident will be barred from the premises.

The panel, chaired by Cllr Diane Chambers (Con), imposed interim steps reducing the opening times by two hours on Fridays and Saturdays, removal of all glass after 8pm, and an increase in door staff.

A full hearing will take place on Tuesday, August 21.

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