CEN article: Tesco in second bid to sell booze

Home - Tesco. TESCO has appealed against a decision not to give it an alcohol licence for its Cambridge Mill Road store – after vowing not to sell booze in “known disorder” areas.
The appeal comes despite the troubled area being designated a “cumulative impact zone”, which creates a presumption against giving out new alcohol licenses.

Cambridgeshire police objected to the original application on the grounds it could add to disorder in the area.

But Tesco chiefs have appealed against the decision despite the statement on their website which says: “We do not apply for licences in areas with known disorder issues.”

Cambridge City Council’s licensing sub-committee’s decision on August 17 to reject the store’s booze application was greeted by loud applause from campaigners.

Ruth Deyermond, planning co-ordinator of the No Mill Road Tesco campaign, hailed the decision “a victory for common sense and the community”.

Tesco sought a licence to sell alcohol from 10am-10pm seven days a week.

But police opposed the application arguing further alcohol sales would exacerbate alcohol-related problems.

Insp Marcia Nichols said the area suffered a “disproportionate” level of alcohol-related trouble and was already a “hotspot for violence”.

But Tesco will attempt to persuade councillors to grant a licence in December.

A Tesco spokeswoman said: “We have submitted an appeal against the decision for the alcohol licence. Our Express store in Mill Road is extremely popular and customers have told us they would like the opportunity to purchase our full range of items and this includes beers, wines and spirits.

“As a company, we take our responsibilities regarding the sale of alcohol exceptionally seriously and we already have robust policies in place to ensure our staff sell alcohol legally.”

No Mill Road Tesco Campaign has vowed to fight the licence bid.

A spokeswoman said: “We will maintain the opposition we successfully put forward at the licensing committee last time.”
The case will now be heard at Cambridge Magistrates’ Court.

A council statement said: “We have been advised Tesco Stores Ltd have appealed the sub-committee’s decision and consequently the matter will be subject to a further hearing in the Magistrates’ Court.”

Cambridge News, 3rd October 2009

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