FUNCTIONS at Ross High Rugby Football Club’s clubhouse could now run into the small hours of Monday after a major variation to its alcohol licence was granted despite a neighbour’s concern.

The rugby club, on Blawearie Road, Tranent, will now be able to open until 1am on Mondays, which a club spokesman said would help generate money for the club.

Iain Hastie, treasurer,told a recent meeting of East Lothian Licensing Board in Haddington the club had turned away business as they were previously only able to stay open until 11pm and many people wanted a later closing time.

One objector, a neighbour, attended the licensing board meeting, and while she was not against the rugby club making use of their clubhouse, she raised a number of issues.

She told the meeting: “They gather outside late at night and some of the language is quite bad at times.

“I had a friend over recently with her children and we had to close my living room windows because the conversation was not something you’d like kids to hear.

“I don’t have a problem with them having extra events but we already put up with [this] on Friday and Saturday nights.”

The major variation also included changing the club’s licence to an open club, although Mr Hastie insisted “we’ll still run it as a rugby club, it’s not a pub”.

Kirstie MacNeill, clerk to the licensing board, suggested the neighbour and a representative from the rugby club meet with Rudi Fruzynski, licensing standards officer at East Lothian Council, to address concerns.

PC Heather Bowsher, representing the police at the meeting, said they had never received any complaints from residents near the clubhouse, while Mr Fruzynski said he had never received a complaint about anti-social behaviour, or noise.

After both parties agreed to meet Mr Fruzynski to discuss the issues raised, licensing board members unanimously agreed to grant the major variation to the licence.