THE landlord of Brighton’s oldest gay pub is selling up after almost 20 years following a licensing dispute which he says has left him stressed and damaged his business.

Dean Holmes has put The Bulldog on the market after nearly 20 years of running the well-known gay venue in St James’s Street.

The freehold on the late-night venue has been made available for £1.1 million.

The planned sale follows a damning review into incidents at the pub last year which saw Sussex Police calling for the venue’s licence to be revoked.

The review detailed 48 incidents at the pub since January 2014 including underage drinking, drug use, fights, and sexual assaults.

Mr Holmes avoided losing his license but was told to close the venue at 1am for a month in September and subsequent weekdays and 3am on Fridays and Saturdays.

Under new licence conditions, the venue also had to install CCTV in the pub’s toilets, operate a breathalyser system on the door, serve drinks in plastic cups and have two bouncers on the door from 10pm until close.

The four-storey property has capacity for 160 customers over two floors and the sale price includes a “spacious” three-bedroom flat.

Estate agents Sidney Phillips said the building would be sold as a going concern, allowing the pub to remain at the heart of the city’s gay village and that any new owner had “scope to increase thriving trade”.

Mr Holmes said: "I deeply regret that I have had to put my business up for sale after running a highly successful gay business for nearly 20 years.

“The outcome of the recent police review has severely damaged my reputation and respect in the gay community.

“I suffered months of bad press and damaged my own reputation in a desperate attempt to save my threatened licence.

“I imposed extremely strict methods on my regular customers upsetting so many who used to enjoy the Bulldog's facilities on a daily and weekly basis.

“I am confident that under new ownership the Bulldog can regain respect from its lost customers and thrive again as one of the longest running gay bars in the UK."