A LATE night bar came under renewed fire at a heated public meeting last night.
MP Iain Duncan Smith, Redbridge’s police chief Sue Williams and council leader Keith Prince listened to a steady stream of complaints about Funky Mojoe in High Road, South Woodford.
The bar was slammed again and again by neighbours who say their lives are being made miserable by drunken revellers spilling onto the streets in the early hours of the morning.
Janet Shea, 75, who lives in the Manor Court Lodge retirement flats next door to Funky Mojoe, drew loud applause from the 100 or so people gathered at St Mary’s church in the High Road.
She said: “I have been woken up every weekend for four years.
“I don’t know sometimes if I am living in the Tower of London, Holloway Prison or wherever.
“You have got people walking up and down outside your bedroom windows. It is noise and nothing but noise and we are up to here with it.”
Residents had asked politicians and police to take a tougher line on ASB outside the bar at a public meeting in February.
But Lynda Edwards, also of Manor Court Lodge, said little had changed since then.
“We just keep getting told to collect evidence, evidence, evidence,” she said.
“Four years down the line we are still collecting evidence.”
Borough Commander Sue Williams said there had been 13 crime reports at Funky Mojoe since January – two for violent assaults and the rest for mobile phone thefts.
She added that her officers had made regular visits to the bar but found no issues in terms of licensing.
But residents reiterated that it was anti social behaviour associated with the club which was their biggest concern.
Mum-of-five, Debby Buchan, who lives in the Queen Mary’s Gate development, said she regularly cleared away bottles and cans so her children did not have to look at them on their way to school.
And other residents complained about noise from a nearby car park and taxis outside the club blocking the road.
Alan Drake, head of community protection for Redbridge Council, admitted regular meetings with disgruntled residents and Funky Mojoe had failed to satisfy many.
“The residents are not as happy as they might be with the outcomes of those meetings,” he said. “They clearly still have concerns.”
Council leader Keith Prince said new legislation due to be introduced by the government in October would give the council greater powers to act against bars in the area.
And Cllr Hugh Cleaver, of Church End Ward, said: “The big mistake was giving Funky Mojoe a licence in the first place.
“It is a well-run premises in the wrong place.”