16th May 2021
Hot Chilli in Bolton has had its licence revoked after a police raid discovered more than 60 guests at an illegal lockdown wedding reception.
On 21st February police found a wedding party in full swing,
The event, when indoor mixing between different households was prohibited, resulted in fixed penalty notices of £200 being handed out to 37 adults – totalling £7,400.
The police then prompted a review of the restaurant’s licence, presenting video footage recorded by Greater Manchester Police of what they found on the day.
PC Andrew Hopwood said there had been a report to the police that an Indian wedding was taking place inside the restaurant, in Duscar Business Park, Egerton, with approximately 60 people inside. The party-goers were sat at tables awaiting food service.
A futher 20 people then arrived. The bride and groom were not present.
Bolton is experinced a sharp spike in Covid-19 infections, with 18 people in hospital – five of whom have had one vaccine jab.
Shek Shah, the owner of the business, said due to health reasons he had appointed a manager to run the business, and then went abroad.
Mr Shah claims he was only told the night before about the event and was led to believe it was a small party.
He said he took full responsibility for the event, but then blamed the manager claiming he “felt that he had been put in a very difficult position,” and had been targeted by the police.
Since the incident, he said the premises had been subjected to abuse on social media and customers boycott.
A police statment said: “We were of the opinion that the premises had deliberately breached the restrictions which were in place and had complete disregard to the licensing objectives of the prevention of crime and disorder, public nuisance and public safety.
“We were satisfied that revocation of the licence was a necessary and proportionate response in order to address the concerns that instigated the review.”