A Woodford Green restaurant that defied Covid-19 restrictions in at least 13 incidents with illegal club nights has lost its licence.
In its determination to revoke the licence for Melin, in Chigwell Road, licensing sub-committee chairwoman Cllr Namreen Chaudhry (Lab, Goodmayes) said owner Ali Melin “has operated these premises with complete disregard for the safety of his staff, customers and the public at large”.
She added: “He has repeatedly failed to implement any social distancing measures or insist on mask wearing.”
Mr Melin did not hand over CCTV footage on multiple visits from the police and council enforcement officers when there were as many as 170 people inside.
On November 3, the same day that police attended and found the doors locked and the windows blacked out, the restaurant posted a video on Instagram showing about 100 people dancing and what appears to be the voice of Mr Melin shouting about ignoring the lockdown.
At the licensing meeting Cllr Paul Canal (Con, Bridge) said: “I wish to call (Melin Chigwell) a nightclub because that’s how they were operating. I believe a premises of this size with over 100 people inside is a Covid-19 factory.
“The way in which Melin has been run demonstrates that the owner is not in a position to act responsibly, and is unlikely to change.”