April 27, 2011
off-licence wins controversial bid to sell booze until midnight
A Brean convenience store has this week been given the controversial
go-ahead to sell alcohol until midnight despite strong opposition
from local residents.
District Council's Licensing Panel held a meeting in Burnham's
Princess Theatre on Wednesday afternoon (April 27th) where councillors
considered the proposed extension in opening hours from 10pm to
midnight at McColl's in South Road.
heard from nearby resident Mary Vickers, who said she is concerned
that the extra hours will lead to late night disorder and irresponsible
drinking, and from David Crank, a solicitor representing McColl's,
who defended the plans.
Vickers said: "This is a completely unnecessary extension
in opening hours - the current opening is late enough."
fear it will open the floodgates for other retailers to apply
for similar opening hours and lead to an increase in irresponsible
drinking in Brean. Let's keep this a family-friendly holiday village."
David Crank, a solicitor representing McColl's, told the meeting:
"There is an increased demand from March to late October
for a range of goods late at night at this store, including alcohol,
which is why we want the extension."
added: "We've heard the concerns of local residents and spoken
to many people in the area. The store's manager is highly experienced
and we have internal and external CCTV in place to record any
problems. Furthermore, a strict 'challenge 25 policy' is in place
where young adults are challenged to provide ID where there is
doubt about their age."
been suggested that this store will become a place of resort for
alcohol late at night in Brean, but that's not correct as other
pubs already sell alcohol to mdnight."
Panel Chairman Gill Slocombe told the meeting that the application
had stoked up lots of interest in the village. "There have
been lots of objections and we thank the local people for their
interest," she said.
giving approval to the extension of hours to midnight, the Licensing
Panel has also placed a number of conditions on the owner - including
enforcement of the 'challenge 25' policy.
Brean Parish Council also expressed concerns for the safety of
the community. Barry Hunt, clerk of the council, told Burnham-On-Sea.com:
"The parish council have, in recent years, given much support
to the police regarding unsocial behaviour, drunkenness, vandalism
and underage drinking in South Road."
And Brean's Knoll Park Residents Association also objected to
the application in the interest of preventing crime and disorder
and public safety.