Blow for town's security cameras

By Jenni DixonA PUBLICAN who installed the first security cameras in an upmarket seaside town may have to remove them after breaching planning laws.Graham Dungey, who runs the King's Head pub in Southwold, has put in £8,000-worth of closed circuit television cameras outside and inside the grade II listed premises.

By Jenni Dixon

A PUBLICAN who installed the first security cameras in an upmarket seaside town may have to remove them after breaching planning laws.

Graham Dungey, who runs the King's Head pub in Southwold, has put in £8,000-worth of closed circuit television cameras outside and inside the grade II listed premises.

He made the move in an effort to improve security at the High Street pub – and prove that late-night disorder in the town was not caused by his customers.


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However, Mr Dungey may now have to take down the four cameras that he has installed outside the pub because he does not have planning permission for them.

According to Waveney District Council's regulations, planning permission needs to be sought to install security cameras in conservation areas, such as Southwold, and on listed buildings.

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Mr Dungey said: "My putting cameras on the outside is generally going down a storm with the other traders, especially those who have been burgled as it traces traffic in and out of the town at night.

"I was not aware that I needed planning permission, but as I do now, we will be putting the application in."

A spokesman for Waveney District Council said although closed circuit television cameras did not normally need planning approval, they did if installed in a conservation area or on a listed building.

He added an enforcement officer would be visiting the pub in the near future to explain the procedure to Mr Dungey and ask him to apply for retrospective planning permission.

Mr Dungey took the drastic action last week of installing the cameras along High Street and York Road after finding a lot of the late-night rowdiness in Southwold was being blamed on his drinkers.

"I live on the High Street and quite often I'm woken up myself when the pub is shut, empty or cleared," he said.

John Purdy, of Purdy's Newsagents, which is in High Street and near the King's Head pub, said he did not blame Mr Dungey for putting in the cameras.

"On Friday night there was a ridiculous amount of noise – it was quite frightening actually. And it does seem to be coming from the other end of the High Street, not from the Kings Head end," he added.

Mr Dungey, who took over the Adnams pub 10 months ago, has also installed eight cameras inside the four-room pub so that his staff can see all areas from the bar area.

"Internally, there are areas of the pub where, because of its layout, they cannot be seen from the bar and guidelines for sensible alcohol retailing recommend having all areas visible," he said.

jenni.dixon@eadt.co.uk

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