British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) chief executive Brigid Simmonds has criticised the Government for rejecting plans to hold a full consultation into granting later opening hours during the Olympics. Home Office minister James Brokenshire told Parliament yesterday that plans were considered to relax the Licensing Act to allow later opening during periods of the 2012 games. “In consultation with the police and others, we decided it would not be appropriate to do so,” he said. Simmonds said: “I don’t think they’ve looked into the issue closely enough. I think they’ve taken the decision on the basis of the views of the police, and I don’t think their decisions are valid. “I was at the Beijing Olympics and in Delhi and Melbourne for the Commonwealth Games and there was nothing associated with late night opening and anti-social behaviour.” Simmonds had lobbied ministers to hold a consultation on whether there could be extended hours for two four-day periods around the opening and closing weekends of both the Olympics and Paralympics. The industry had hoped that the Government would follow its approach at the royal wedding, when pubs and restaurants were allowed to trade until 1am over two evenings of the extended bank holiday weekend. A consultation into similar action during the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee is currently underway.