ABERDEEN councillors have voted to take no action ahead of a licensing board vote on the future of a Tory donor's bar after customers did not adhere to social distancing rules.

Footage posted on Twitter showed customers hugging at The Draft Project last week as Scotland secured their place at Euro 2020.

READ MORE: Tory donor's Aberdeen bar blasted for lack of social distancing

The bar, owned by PB Devco which also runs the nearby Soul Bar, was one of 28 venues linked to Aberdeen’s coronavirus cluster outbreak in August.

PB Devco donated £20,000 to the Conservative and Unionist Party on May 22, 2017, just weeks before the UK election.

A rapidly organised meeting of the special licensing objections committee met this morning to consider putting in a representation on the application for a renewed occasional licence for the Draft Project.

But members voted three to two in favour of taking no action.

The Aberdeen Licensing Board is to meet later today to consider the application from PB Devco for another 14-day licence for the beer tent.

Tory councillor Ryan Houghton, who convened this morning’s meeting, claimed it would be a “peculiar step” to intervene.

“To use the council in this way for one specific premises, when we have a licensing board sitting this afternoon feels peculiar to me.

“I understand there is definitely a lot of public concern relating to videos around the premises on the night of a football game where a ‘once in a generation’ – some might say – goal was scored and people were very excitable.

“However I also saw videos of many premises in Aberdeen displaying pretty much the same behaviour and to my knowledge, there is no other request to determine any other premises’ occasional licence.

“So I am a little concerned we seem to be singling out one single premises.

“We have public health officials and police who would be best placed to make objections based on evidence and the facts as they know them, dealing with these matters on a routine basis – as opposed to us, it seems to me, getting together off the back of media interest in this one particular premise.”

Liberal Democrat councillor Steve Delaney – who proposed the council objected – countered: “We have all seen the videos on social media and in the middle of a health pandemic it is very concerning.

“It is very much in order for this committee to put forward an objection, the council is a statutory consultee on licensing matters – the council is perfectly within its rights to do so.

“I feel leadership has to be shown at such a time.

“It is understood people were quite rightly euphoric at the Scotland game given the excellent result.

“We need to look at this particular incident – football matches are not exactly a new phenomenon and licensed premises are very much used to managing them.

“But unfortunately these premises found themselves unable to manage the situation – which anyone could have reasonably foreseen.

“There was a lack of social distancing, shouting, signing – all breaches of Covid-19 regulations presenting serious threats to public safety and public health.

“In Aberdeen, we quite rightly expect the very highest standards with regards to management of our licensed premises.

“The hospitality sector is under an awful lot of pressure right now because of coronavirus, and incidents of this type really do let the sector down.”

SNP councillor Neil Copland said: “I think the council has to send a message here and I am very disappointed.”

The bar's application for a pop-up tent venue controversially fast-tracked in the summer after Tory MSP Liam Kerr called for urgent action.

The Scottish Hospitality Group called for the bar to be investigated.

They said: "The scenes coming from #draftproject tonight in Aberdeen are nothing short of disgraceful. The SHG condemn fully the behaviour of the operator & customers. There is a duty to protect public health and we would support any action taken by authorities after any investigation."

Kevin Stewart, SNP MSP for Aberdeen Central, described the incident as "a disgrace" last week and called for the council to investigate.

He said: “Let’s be completely honest about this, the scenes in that particular venue last night were a disgrace and have put people in our city at risk - how many bars and jobs are being put on the line because of the arrogance and apparent flagrant disregard of the rules in one venue?"

READ MORE: Covid: SNP MSP calls for Aberdeen Council to investigate scenes at Tory donor's bar

John Swinney was asked about the issue at the coronavirus media briefing last week. 

He said football fans have a natural desire to celebrate, but the virus is a “very real threat” as that day's “terrible” statistics showed.

Swinney said: "This virus does not rest. Yes, we want to celebrate but we all have to understand what the virus needs is human contact.

“If we let our guard down the virus will have an opportunity to spread."

READ MORE: Covid in Scotland: John Swinney condemns Tory donor's bar for breaking rules