Cheers! Pubs to open all day

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The Independent Online

Pubs are to be allowed to open all day under a major shake-up in licensing laws announced today by Home Secretary Jack Straw.

Unveiling a Government White Paper, Mr Straw told the Commons some venues would be allowed to open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

But he insisted the changes would be balanced with "tough and uncompromising" new powers for police to deal with violence.

Mr Straw said the end to fixed closing times would help tackle the problem of "binge drinking" and pub-goers all spilling onto the streets at the same time.

The new licensing package will also give local authorities strong new powers to shut down premises which become a focus for crime and disorder or cause "unreasonable nuisance" to nearby residents.