Plantation Hotel licensee Harry Barry on the site of what will become the new Plantation Hotel beer garden.
Plantation Hotel licensee Harry Barry on the site of what will become the new Plantation Hotel beer garden.

COMING UP HOPS, Steve's in charge

By BELINDA SCOTT

SUBMISSIONS regarding vomit on pavements, urine on walls, and noisy hotel patrons failed to dissuade Coffs Harbour City councillors from approving a new beer garden at the Plantation Hotel on Thursday.

Coffs Harbour City Council approved a recommendation from the Director of Planning, Environment and Development, Gina Vereker, to approve the beer garden which had attracted 37 written objections.

Bentleigh Motor Inn leaseholder Reg Allen, which is next door to the Plantation Hotel, addressed the council on Thursday night.

Mr Allen said he was not convinced by the information provided by an acoustic expert who said the noise which would be created by the new beer garden complied with legal requirements.

He said motel residents were frequently woken by noise from hotel patrons outside the Plantation, in spite of installing double glazing. The majority of objectors came from the Department of Housing high-rise residential building fronting Moonee Street.

One of the residents, Mrs Liz Nojin, said that virtually everyone in the block had opposed the application for a variety of reasons.

She said people swearing, shrieking, yelling and abusing each other and even having sex in the laneway behind the hotel and the units, and in the nearby carparks, was profoundly upsetting for elderly residents. She said the noise and swearing carried clearly to the multi-storey units.

"We can't complain about the pubs ? they were here when we came, but it is the drinking and yelling and screaming after hours, especially on Friday and Saturday nights (that upsets residents)," Mrs Nojin said.

"It's not the general hotel patrons, but sometimes people are practically camping in our back entrance.

"We are people who are in their twilight years. We hear people copping it and being abused and what can we do? We can't do anything."

But Mrs Nojin said licensing police had advised her that because Moonee Street and Cox Lane were alcohol-free areas, residents should ring up immediately and report all incidents.

Cr Jenny Bonfield said the Plantation Hotel enjoyed a family atmosphere, and was somewhere people could gather for social activities and feel safe.

"It is unfair to label all the rabble rousers as all coming from the Plantation Hotel," Cr Bonfield said. "I don't believe Harry Barry is responsible for social engineering."

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