THE bar where a drinker's eye socket and skull were cracked in a vicious attack had a "strong link" to members of organised criminal gangs, it's been revealed.

Sherlocks in Birkenhead was shut down last month, with police and the local council deciding that was the "only appropriate measure" to protect public safety.

But it has now been revealed that the decision came due to Merseyside Police's concerns over the link, which they said was "clear".

Minutes published from the council's licensing act 2003 sub-committee, from which the press and public were excluded, said: "Sergeant [Craig] Carmichael believed that it was clear from the evidence that the premises was linked to serious crime violence and violent disorder and had a strong link to members of organised criminal gangs and requested that the Premises Licence be revoked."

The decision means the bar on Conway Street will have to close unless its owners make an appeal, with the decision coming after the "serious incident" happened in the early hours of October 28.

The victim, a man in his 20s, was set upon by the attacker at around 3.20am, and suffered a fractured skull, fractured eye sockets and a broken nose.

His injuries were "serious but non life-threatening", but he still requires treatment almost two months on.

Police said two 24 year-old men have been arrested on suspicion of wounding and released on bail, while a 19 year-old man was arrested on suspicion of wounding before being released under investigation.

The incident caused the force to submit an application for a summary review of the bar's licence, which took place at Wallasey Town Hall on November 22.

According to the minutes, Sgt Carmichael told the eight hour-long meeting about the "serious incidents of violence and disorder inside, near to and in the vicinity of the premises".

He presented CCTV evidence of a "number of incidents of violent disorder" inside the bar and in a close proximity – and that a number of these crimes were still under investigation.

As well as the police, minutes from the meeting said neighbours and the council's licensing authority had raised concerns over the bar on Conway Street, which claimed on its Twitter page to be the "longest running in BirkenVegas".

The minutes also revealed representations from the two residents “related to a number of incidents of anti-social behaviour and violence which had occurred at the premises”.

But Mr P Robson, who was at the meeting representing the bar, requested that no weight be attached to the two incidents that happened outside of the venue.

He said that was due to “a conflict of interest” – due to a family member of one of the local residents being the manager of another nearby bar.

He also asked that a “number of measures” be put in place to prevent incidents like these happening in future.

He said the bar owners accepted two incidents in question – including the October 28 attack – could have been “managed better”, but that new “rigorous conditions” would mean the bar could continue operating.

But Andrew Bushell, the council’s licensing operations manager, told the meeting the problems were down to the way in which the bar was managed, and “therefore supported the request of Merseyside Police that the licence be revoked”.

The minutes, published to the council’s website last week, concluded: “In determining the matter, members accepted the police’s evidence and submissions and their strong view that no conditions could be attached to the premises that would prevent the clientele associated with these premises attending and further incidents of serious crime or disorder taking place at the premises.”

The force was contacted for an update on its recent CCTV appeal of a man they wish to speak to who may have vital information about the investigation.