Tight restrictions imposed on city centre shop’s alcohol licence

August 5, 2011 No Comments »
Tight restrictions imposed on city centre shop’s alcohol licence

Councillors have enforced tight restrictions on a shop’s licence to sell alcohol after hearing claims that customers were caught drinking booze inside the store.

Police accused the Wood Street Convenience Store in Cardiff of allowing men to drink bottles of vodka and whiskey inside the premises.

The shop was ordered to install new CCTV equipment, and must always have a licensed member of staff present when selling alcohol.

But the store owners said the decision was disproportionate and impractical.

They said they would be forced to pay up to £170 to train each staff member to become an alcohol licence holder.

Cardiff University researcher Sarju Patel, 42, who has owned the shop since 2008, said: “It is not feasible for a shop of our size with the turnover of staff that we have to have this imposed on us.

“We don’t have full-timers because it’s the nature of the business. People leave after three weeks, six weeks, a month or maybe three years – You just don’t know if they’re going to stay.

“The licensing committee have to work in a shop and know how it is run to be able to impose restrictions like this – It’s just impractical.”

The decision was made by Cardiff councillors at the licensing sub-committee.

Police had applied for a review of the store’s licence, citing two incidents in May in which they claim men drank booze inside the shop.

The sub-committee heard evidence from Arriva Trains employee Trudie Burns, who said she saw two men consume a quarter-bottle of vodka on the store’s premises. However, no CCTV footage of the incident was found.

Police also claimed CCTV footage showed a man enter the store and drink two miniature bottles of whiskey in front of staff. But the Patels disputed this claim, saying staff did not see this second incident occur.

The alleged incidents came just weeks after police warned off-licences in the city centre to stop serving known street drinkers or risk losing their licence.

In a letter submitted to the licensing sub-committee, Cardiff North AM Julie Morgan defended the store, accusing South Wales Police of using a “sledgehammer to crack a nut” by applying for a review of the shop’s alcohol licence.

The Patels said they would seek to appeal the licensing decision.

Related Posts

Leave A Response