An Armley shop’s application to sell alcohol has been opposed by councillors, who say the application would ‘intensify’ existing problems in the area.
Lietuvaite European Food Shop, in Branch Road, has applied to Leeds City Council for a licence to sell alcohol daily between 10am and 8pm.
But Armley’s councillors say Branch Road and Armley Town Street are covered by a cumulative impact policy, which limits new licensing applications due to ongoing problems with street drinking and anti-social behaviour in the area.
In a joint objection to the application, councillors Lou Cunningham, James McKenna and Alice Smart said:
“Armley has long-standing problems with street drinking and anti-social behaviour. These issues are exacerbated by the volume of off-licences in the area.
“As local councillors, we are frequently told by residents that they want to see a reduction in the number of off licences in Armley town centre.
“We also know that many residents feel unsafe shopping in Armley because of the prevalence of street drinking, crime and anti-social behaviour. All of these problems are heightened by the excessive availability of cheap alcohol.
“A great deal of work has been done by local councillors, the MP, police and local residents to address the issues around street drinking and anti-social behaviour. Having another licensed premises in Armley would only intensify those problems and increase the number of people who feel unsafe shopping in Armley.”
Leeds City Council’s licensing sub-committee is set to decide the application on Tuesday, 12 April 2022.
WLD revealed last week that Shamil Khalil, who runs Armley Food Centre in Town Street, had withdrawn his application to change the hours he is licensed to sell alcohol.
The legislation around cumulative impact zones needs amending. Currently Councillors, Police and other agencies are having to fight alcohol applications on a weekly (almost daily) basis. There was one withdrawn by an Armley Town Street applicant less than a week ago. The law should be changed so that no applications can be filed in an area covered by a cumulative impact policy – end of. The applicants should receive a response saying ‘there’s a cumulative impact policy so we shredded your paperwork and flung it in the bin – thank you’. It needn’t be complicated.