South Woodford anti-social behaviour meeting reveals Funky Mojoe concerns

Legislation could be used to force problem bars and clubs in Redbridge to sell alcohol for shorter periods, a packed public meeting in South Woodford heard.

Residents raised concerns in St Mary’s Church, High Road, on Friday about the late opening hours of the Funky Mojoe nightclub.

Redbridge Council leader Keith Prince said the management of Funky Mojoe had tried to “accommodate” the wishes of neighbouring residents.

But, he said: “When people leave the premises, that’s when the problems start.”

And MP Iain Duncan Smith, who called the meeting, said the nightclub was the “main issue” affecting residents.

Mr Prince said the council will be able to use early morning restriction orders (emros) and late night levys from October.

The former will restrict the sale of alcohol in designated areas at certain times while the latter will mean late-opening alcohol sellers will have to make contributions towards the cost of policing the night-time economy.

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When asked by the Recorder if the council would seek to use an emro on Funky Mojoe, he said: “We would have to look at the evidence and make a decision on the evidence put to us.

“I’ve been careful of not falling into predetermination.”

Debby Buchan, of the Queen Mary’s Gate housing development in Queen Mary Avenue, opposite the club, told the panel she often goes out with a bin bag to pick up bottles of alcohol left by patrons.

She said: “The drinks at Funky Mojoe are expensive and you get a lot of people who stand outside drinking bottles of wine and we get blamed for it

“I don’t see why my children should walk past six cans of Special Brew.”

Janet Shea, of Manor Court Lodge next to the club, said: ”We’re getting woken up at 2.30am and 3am. I want it closed down or the license revoked.”

Another resident said there were fights inside and outside the club.

Redbridge borough commander Det Ch Supt Sue Williams said there were 13 crime reports from Funky Mojoe since January – two for minor assault and 11 for mobile phone theft.

The Recorder has made queries with the club’s management.