Reading kebab hut wins late opening bid but must obey rules

The new owner of a kebab hut popular with revellers in Reading town centre has won permission to stay open until 2am on weekends.

Reading Central Kebabs is located in a hut in the middle of St Mary’s Butts in the town centre.

It is one of the few places to get food in the town centre that is still open late for takeaway at night, and is known for serving up kebabs, chips, rice and burgers to hungry revellers on nights out.

The kebab hut’s new owner Kamal Saleem had applied to be open selling food from 9am to 2am on Friday to Saturday, and from 9am to 1am from Sunday to Thursday.

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Mr Saleem’s application was granted, but a number of rigorous conditions were imposed on the licence.

Condition 5 states that a ‘door supervisor’ needs to be present at the hut from Friday to Saturday from 11pm to 2am.

The door supervisor must keep a register of their attendance, with any incident of crime or disorder recorded.

It was also suggested that, if possible, the kebab hut should sign up to the Townsafe Radio Scheme. The scheme is used by venues and security staff to report and track incidents, and a risk assessment must be conducted to determine whether the door supervisor is needed on other nights.

Mr Saleem must also operate CCTV at the hut whenever it is open, keep recordings for at least 31 days, and provide these recordings to police and council officers on request.

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The decision to grant the licence for the hut was made on Tuesday, December 21, 2021.

Previously, the licence for the kebab hut was held by Murat Emekdar, who actually had rights to sell food later, from 9am to 3am on Monday, Thursday and Friday, 9am to 3.30am on Saturday, and 9am.

However, Mr Emekdar’s licence became dormant because the land operator, Reading Minster church, revoked his permission to trade from the hut.

Sale of food only becomes an activity that requires a licence from 11pm to 5am at night.

Reading Chronicle | Town Centre