The Mill Restaurant and Bar in Stowmarket has become the first in Suffolk to be accredited under the Licensing Security and Vulnerability Initiative (Licensing SAVI).
The Mill Restaurant and Bar, located on Stowmarket’s Station Road East, is the first venue in the county to successfully apply for the accreditation, supported by Suffolk Constabulary.
Participating premises conduct a self-assessed audit of the physical safety features of their venue, as well as any existing policies and schemes in place, in order to receive a star rating to display to show they are responsible businesses that consider the welfare and vulnerability of their customers and staff.
Robert Perry is Director of the Maltings Entertainment Complex, trading as the Mill Restaurant & Bar and Carbon Nightclub in Stowmarket. He found Licensing SAVI to be beneficial in helping him evaluate the venue’s existing policies and security measures, and to make improvements where needed:
He said: “I was thrilled when I heard about Licensing SAVI and thought it was a great idea. The four licensing objectives are very important to us as we take pride in our customers’ safety. We are grateful to have the Licensing SAVI scheme in place as it has benefited our venue, staff, and customers.
“I would like to thank the rest of my team for their commitment in keeping our venue safe for all our patrons and staff.”
Launched in March 2021, Licensing SAVI ensures licensed premises are aware of and meet the standards required by responsible authorities in England and Wales. It was developed at the request of the Home Office and is backed by the National Police Chiefs’ Council.
A key objective is to ensure licensees demonstrate compliance with the Licensing Act 2003 and promote the four licensing objectives: prevention of public nuisance; prevention of crime and disorder; protection of children from harm; and public safety.
Sergeant Daniel Peck, of the West Neighbourhood Partnership Team, said:
“It’s great that those running The Mill Restaurant and Bar have taken this opportunity to invest in their business and show that customer safety is a key consideration of their operations.
“Licensing SAVI is a fantastic tool, created by the Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (Police CPI), to help venues identify improvements they could make to their operation and highlight the good work they already do to keep people safe.”
When seeking the accreditation, venues must show knowledge of correct procedures in a number of areas, including staff training, underage sales policies, first aid, identifying vulnerable customers, banning protocols and drugs policies. The accreditation also supports venues by raising awareness of key issues, such as women’s safety and drink spiking.
Chief Superintendent Marina Ericson said:
“I would like to congratulate The Mill Restaurant and Bar on being the first venue in the county to receive the Licensing SAVI accreditation.
“I hope this is the first of many venues that sign up in Suffolk. I believe this initiative can only be a good thing for venues and their staff, to ensure everyone is aware of the proper guidance and procedures, which in turn benefits those who visit these
Ian Shuttleworth from Licensing SAVI applauded the team on their achievement:
“Congratulations to Robert and the team at the excellent Mill Restaurant and Bar, on becoming the first venue in Suffolk to be accredited with our award and, in doing so, achieving our highest rating of 5 stars.
“We are delighted to be working in partnership with Suffolk Police and the Local Authorities across the county in rolling out Licensing SAVI to more venues and in turn, helping contribute to the safety and the feeling of safety within the night-time economy.
“We are a Police-owned, not-for-profit organisation focused on crime prevention, and we very much look forward to more venues becoming accredited across Suffolk in the near future. We urge members of the public to start looking out for our star rating in windows of venues when they go out, and be happy in the knowledge that they have undertaken a thorough assessment to look after your safety and security and deal with any vulnerability.”