Credit: Alfie Reynolds

Tramshed’s 3am opening plans approved by council

The decision comes despite neighbours’ complaints about revellers urinating in gardens and vomiting on doorsteps after previous club nights

TRAMSHED has been granted permanent permission for 31 late-night openings a year by Cardiff Council.

Some of the venue’s neighbours raised concerns over anti-social behaviour from revellers, which included people vomiting and urinating on residents’ doorsteps and front gardens.

Tramshed has been at the centre of a planning row over its application to permanently open late at night.
Credit: Alfie Reynolds

When it originally opened in 2015 Tramshed held a licence to open until 3am on 21 nights a year. The venue then obtained permission from Cardiff Council for two temporary 12-month licences, between July 2020 and November 2022, which allowed up to 31 nights annually.

The venue now has a permanent licence to open until 3am on 31-nights per year on a maximum of two days per week, with the application promising mitigation such as a specific queuing system.

Nearby Hafod Street resident, Mo Khan, 42, has lived near Tramshed for the past five years. He has witnessed anti-social behaviour, such as people vomiting and urinating in nearby gardens, but feels apathetic about the decision.

“What can we do? The decision’s been made now. The council and police say that only one complaint about the noise was made but that doesn’t mean it’s not an issue,” the father-of-one said.

Hafod Street backs onto the route taken by many revellers as they head back into the city centre after gigs.
Credit: Alfie Reynolds

“Most people don’t want to kick up a fuss, especially when you live so close. It’s annoying but I just hope that this queue plan is monitored properly. I don’t want them ending it now they’ve got their decision,” he added.

Another resident on neighbouring Dinas Street, Sara Ifans, 28, takes issue with the “unacceptable” amount of litter that has previously been left near her house after gigs.

“I raised concerns to a steward one night after someone urinated on my neighbour’s car. They were apologetic but didn’t seem to report it further as we never heard back.

“I don’t want to be one of these NIMBYs because I love going to gigs and have been to the Tramshed before, I just wish some people had more consideration for the people who live nearby.”

Nearby Dinas Street is home to two of the residents we spoke to.
Credit: Alfie Reynolds

One of Ms Ifans’ neighbours, Gavin Lewis, has also been to the venue for gigs. He sympathises with the complainants but isn’t too concerned about the plans.

“I’ve only lived here 18 months and have heard how loud it can get but it doesn’t bother me too much,” the 54-year-old said.

“If I had kids it’d be a different story. As long as (Tramshed) stick to promises to continue cleaning up after the events then it won’t be an issue for me.”

During the most recent temporary licence period, November 2021 to November 2022, only 18 late-night events took place out of the 31 allowed.

Some of these events were hosted as part of the BBC Radio 6 Music Festival, with Red Dwarf actor and DJ Craig Charles one of the acts.

The lineup for last year’s BBC Radio 6 Music Festival.
Credit: BBC

Over the course of this period just one noise-complaint was raised to South Wales Police, according to the council’s planning committee, with council officers not hearing of any further complaints related to other drunk and disorderly behaviours.

This is despite three residents objecting to the latest plans due to concerns over this, as well as noise and traffic pollution.

One of these people was mother-of-two, Maggie Birkett, who had witnessed people urinating on her neighbour’s wall, as well as littering in her garden. She previously raised concerns about the decision-making process.

The proximity of Tramshed to neighbouring residential areas.
Credit: Google Maps

“Often council officials that make these decisions don’t live in the area, so can afford to ignore resident concerns,” she said.

“I know that many of my neighbours feel the same as me, but as usual our voices are overlooked in favour of big business, so many don’t bother to comment or complain.”

Local councillor Lynda Thorne also opposed the plans based on residents’ complaints due to concerns for people living in nearby flats and family housing.

“When the original planning application for this venue was agreed it was sold to the residents on the basis that the events would be appealing to middle-aged people and close around 11pm,” she said.

“Since then, they applied for a temporary licence until 3am where they were now putting on DJ shows and they appeal it to a much younger audience who apparently come and go throughout the late hours.

“They are noisy and urinate and drop litter in people’s gardens. I opposed the temporary licence and the extension of the temporary licence because of these complaints.”

Councillor Lynda Thorne raised concerns on behalf of the residents of the nearby Mardy Street flats.
Credit: Alfie Reynolds

As part of the venue’s attempts to alleviate such concerns, a queue management plan was introduced. Taxis are asked to pull up in a designated area on nearby Clare Road to reduce traffic congestion and the venue asks its staff and security teams to perform litter picks and patrols in the area after events.

The venue’s security team stays visible in the street until all guests have left the area and performs patrols on Pendyris Street and Mardy Street to ensure any potentially disruptive behaviour is spotted and reported.

They also remind guests that they are in a residential area and ask them to leave quietly, encouraging them to use on-site toilet facilities before they leave.

Tramshed has been approached for their response to the planning decision.