Glenavon Hotel loses appeal against conviction for holding teenage discos

Although commended by police commander Mike Baird for running a 'good show', the Glenavon was convicted for breach of licensing laws
Although commended by police commander Mike Baird for running a 'good show', the Glenavon was convicted for breach of licensing laws
  • Glenavon brought before the courts in what has been described as a ‘test case’
  • Teenage Sense nights described as ‘an exemplar for alcohol free events’
  • The hotel’s two directors lost their appeal and must now pay fines totalling £3,000

The directors of the Glenavon House Hotel have lost their appeal against a conviction for holding teenage discos on the premises, and must now pay fines totalling £3,000.

Cookstown men Brian Morris, 41, and Gerard Morris, 48, pleaded not guilty to numerous charges of allowing minors on licensed premises.

But after being found guilty at a contested hearing in April last year, appealed against the court’s findings.

The Glenavon Hotel had been holding alcohol-free discos at its nightclub for around 20 years.

Dungannon Magistrates heard that legal action was taken in, what has been dubbed, the “test case” after a PSNI Inspector working in the area issued letters to licensed premises in Cookstown about the legalities surrounding teenage discos.

After police inspections of the hotel’s teenage Sense nights, which were described by the prosecution as “an exemplar for alcohol-free events”, a case was then brought by the PPS.

Brian and Gerard Morris lost their appeal against the conviction resulting from that case on Friday at Dungannon Magistrates Court.

Passing sentence, District Judge John Meehan said: “There was a highly unusual context to this case which is both a contentious and contended issue.

“However, I take on board the completely unblemished record of both defendants.”

Fines amounting to £3,000 were imposed.