A WEST Kirby bar was allowed to reopen after a man was seriously injured outside – but councillors ordered it to close earlier.
Mojo’s, in Dee Lane, has been shut since its licence was suspended following a review at the end of December.
The 34-year-old victim was found with head injuries on Sunday, December 23, and is still critically ill in hospital.
Police told a licensing panel hearing at Wallasey Town Hall that revellers were “migrating” to Mojo’s from other bars because of its 1am licence.
Wirral licensing Sergeant Pete Jenkins said that 10 people had been arrested over four incidents at Mojo’s between November and December 23.
Owner Julian Lea said he planned to change the name of the bar and would focus on community events in future.
DI Judith Blease told the hearing: “It is quite clear people are travelling to West Kirby because Mojo’s is a late bar.
“After the most recent assault, the complainant still hasn’t been able to provide a statement.
“Up until last week it was touch and go as to whether he would survive.”
Neighbourhood Inspector Mick Blease said the incidents had led to community fears about rising crime in West Kirby.
He said: “Two of the four incidents required extensive crime scenes. People have seen the fall-out from this.”
Councillors modified the bar’s licence to allow it to sell alcohol until midnight.
It can open until 12.30am – but no-one will be allowed to enter the bar after 11.30pm.
An upstairs balcony must also close at 9.30pm.
Mr Lea’s solicitor Martyn Green told the hearing: “We have great sympathy for the victim of the last incident.
“However, it took place outside the premises, it was not an incident that occurred inside. My client has been vigilant throughout the time he has run these premises.”
He said revellers who had headed to Mojo’s because of its late licence might now “migrate from West Kirby to the clubs in Birkenhead” but added, “that is a matter for the police to deal with”.
Mr Lea told councillors he planned to introduce a membership card scheme.
He said: “Looking forward, we’re going to change the name and go back to community-based activities, going away from where we were with the 1am licence.”
He added: “The fact that this happened outside the premises has upset us more than anything.”