A PARTY and wedding venue next to a psychiatric hospital has been given the go-ahead to play live music and sell alcohol, despite noise concerns.

The luxury venue is based in a manor house near Thatcham. The manor house was home to a former school, which shut down after a child abuse scandal three decades ago.

Pinchington Hall — which used to be called Crookham Court Manor — is directly opposite Thornford Park hospital. The manor house can now be used for “luxury high-end events”, with alcohol and music, after receiving a premises licence from West Berkshire Council.

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The licence was granted despite concerns that noisy revellers late at night would disturb patients at the neighbouring psychiatric hospital — especially those with severe autism.

The licence means that:

  • Live bands can now play music there until 11pm outdoors; and until midnight indoors on Fridays and Saturdays 
  • A bar in the cellar can sell alcohol until 11pm during the week and 2am on Fridays and Saturdays
  • A maximum of 120 customers can be on the grounds at the same time

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Councillors on the licensing sub-committee heard concerns of neighbours at a remote meeting on May 18, as well as hearing from the license applicant, Linda Beechey-Smith.

They said Ms Beechey-Smith must show the council how the venue plans to manage noise, preventing revellers disturbing hospital patients and people living nearby.

She wants to use Pinchington Hall for “very high-end events”, like small weddings, corporate functions, exclusive concerts, art exhibitions, an open air cinema, and an AirBnB.

The former Crookham Court School, based at the manor house, shut down in 1989 after a BBC investigation revealed teachers were molesting teenage boys. Three teachers and the owner of the school were convicted and sent to prison.