Chef Tony gets to Singh and dance ... until 11pm

6/11/07 Pictures of chef Tony Singh at 'Oloroso' preparing his soup dishes
6/11/07 Pictures of chef Tony Singh at 'Oloroso' preparing his soup dishes

Fears that the Peeblesshire restaurant bought last year by celebrity chef Tony Singh will turn into a “rock pub” have been dismissed by a lawyer representing the eatery.

And, last week, The Old Bakehouse in West Linton was given leave to put on occasional live music events – but only once a month and as part of a dinner-dance.

Friday’s meeting of Scottish Borders Licensing Board heard that the current operating plan for the premises in Main Street did not include provision for live music. But up to May this year, several such events had taken place, prompting near-neighbour Hannah Amos to complain to Scottish Borders Council about excessive noise “into the wee small hours”.

She was one of nine West Linton residents who objected to Tony Singh Ltd being granted a live music permit.

Solicitor Stephen McGowan, representing the company, said his clients “apologised unreservedly” for not observing the operating plan, claiming this had been “a genuine oversight”.

“As soon as this came to light, the live music stopped … and there is emphatically no intention now to turn it into a rock pub,” said Mr McGowan.

He said restaurant manager Ian Smith, who lives above the premises, had already attended this month’s meeting of West Linton Community Council and spoken to other neighbours to explain that he wanted to put on a dinner-dance on one Saturday a month and that the live music would cease at 11pm.

After Mr McGowan agreed to give a written undertaking to this effect and to explain how the volume of the music would be monitored, the board agreed to amend the restaurant’s operating plan accordingly.

“If the neighbours are happy, then we’re happy,” observed board chairman Councillor Willie Archibald.