Camden’s former ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll mayor’ blasts plans for night tax on clubs

PUBLISHED: 12:14 16 January 2013 | UPDATED: 12:14 16 January 2013

Cllr Jonathan Simpson

Cllr Jonathan Simpson

© Nigel Sutton email

Plans for a special tax on pubs and clubs which stay open into the early hours have been met with fierce opposition from Camden’s former “music mayor”.

Camden town hall is working on proposals for a late-night levy on venues which stay open beyond midnight, raising thousands of pounds from bars and clubs in Camden Town.

But Cllr Jonathan Simpson, dubbed the rock ’n’ roll mayor during his time in office in 2010 because of his love for music, slammed the plans for a fresh tax on Camden’s night time economy.

He said: “Venues across London are quiet. I think we need to be realistic about the late-night levy because it could mean that businesses could start struggling even more and it could even mean closures.

“I don’t think that’s a price we should pay.”

Around 70 per cent of the tax raised would go to the Met Police and the remaining cash would be paid to the council.

Simon Pitkeathley, chief executive of Camden Town Unlimited, which represents businesses in the area, said licensees in Camden Town were “concerned” by the proposals.

The council is consulting on the plans until next month when officials will report to the council.

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