Bar hours may be cut back to 1am

Last updated 16:00 10/12/2013

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People heading out for a night on the town in Blenheim next year might find themselves turned away from the bars after 1am if police get their way.

Marlborough police area commander Inspector Simon Feltham said it was no secret police wanted reduced opening hours for bars and off-licence alcohol retailers.

Marlborough bars are legally required to stop serving alcohol at 3am and to close within 30 minutes of last drinks.

Police would prefer if last drinks were served at 1am, Mr Feltham said.

The idea is part of a strategy to reduce alcohol-related crime in the region and had been recommended to the Marlborough District Council for consideration in a new alcohol policy. The council would conduct hearings and reviews early next year and a draft policy considered then put out for public consultation.

A new law allowing local bodies to develop their own policy comes into force on December 18.

Police could issue infringement notices and fines instantly when the new law comes in to force.

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- The Marlborough Express

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