Nag’s Head Market: Upper Place’s licence application could add to antisocial antics, claim neighbours

Life at the Nags Head Market. Picture: Instagram/Nags Head Market

Life at the Nags Head Market. Picture: Instagram/Nags Head Market - Credit: Archant

The leaseholder of a new upper floor in the Nag’s Head Market has applied for licence to sell alcohol and play music – but some neighbours fear this will contribute to antisocial behaviour in the surrounding area.

The Upper Place, a new venue for street food traders, is being built above the bustling Seven Sisters Road market and is forecast to open early next year.

But the leaseholder Simone Moroni, who also owns the Italian Job pub group, is said to have applied for a licence to play amplified, live and recorded music until 12.30am, as well permission to sell booze on premise.

But this has created unease among neighbours, prompting a petition calling on councillors to oppose the application.

Addressing full council one neighbour said: “Residents of the Nag’s Head are very concerned about this application. We think there will be more noise and litter in the streets.

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“We think it will add significantly to the amount of drug dealing that goes on, in particular, because the market is within a few hundred yards of premises in the area where drug dealing goes on.”

They cited well-documented antisocial behaviour issues in the nearby Morrisons’ carpark.

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In a letter to Islington’s licensing team, Cllr Gary Heather (Lab, Finsbury Park), who is opposing the application, stated: “This is a grave concern given the application’s potential to exacerbate crime, disorder, and nuisance in the surrounding area and to impact negatively on public safety.”

But Mr Moroni, who is the designated premises supervisor on the licence, has promised to “personally be there most days, especially at the beginning during this crucial time”. He also said he wants it to be a “long-last relationship”.

Addressing neighbours’ concerns, he said: “The Upper Place is conceived to be a quality street food market, where there will be several offers of high quality food and drink at reasonable prices. We want to offer this to mostly families and professionals living in the area.

“In order to do so, we must provide our customers with a welcoming atmosphere which will make them come again and again [...]

The same applies to the alcohol offer, the operators we are choosing are boutique, highly respected brands, already established in very residential areas (Chiswick, Notting Hill) and therefore with the right profile, specialising in quality craft drinks. This kind of offer does not attract people looking to cause trouble and therefore anti-social behaviour, actually it does the opposite.”

Somu Singh, 35, who’s family own the Nag’s Head Market and the freehold for the Upper Place, doesn’t think it will contribute to anti-social behaviour.

He said: “These people are doing better for the market and this area.

“People’s businesses are struggling and local crowds is not enough, so we are trying to get more crowds for them and for this market.”

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