Words: John Baron
An application to sell alcohol at a Bramley convenience store for longer hours has been granted – but the hours of sale are less than originally applied for following local opposition.
Kamala Food & Wine on Leeds and Bradford Road has been granted a licence to sell alcohol between 6am and 11pm only.
Members of Leeds City Council’s licensing committee heard that applicant Mr Kanthasamy Senthura had originally proposed a 24-hour opening but had scaled it back to between 6am and midnight daily, following local objections.
But the committee listened to further concerns about late-night opening and this week decided to set the sale of alcohol from 6am to 11pm amid concerns over noise affecting neighbouring householders.
Kamala currently sells alcohol between 8am and 9pm Mondays to Saturdays and 10am-9pm Sundays.
At the hearing, agent Ian Rushton said his client realised that the original 24-hour proposal was ‘too much’. He added:
“I do understand and appreciate that the objectors would be concerned with a 24-hour licence. My client also realises that, which is why we have reduced the hours. He does not want to upset people and has a long-term investment in the area.
“We see 6am-12 midnight as a reasonable compromise. the shop is well run and will continue to be well run.”
He proposed a raft of new licensing conditions attached to the application, including maintaining 32 CCTV cameras in the shop, operating a Challenge 25 scheme to deter under-age drinking, notices asking customers to be quiet while entering and leaving and staff regularly monitoring and clearing litter outside the shop. Ongoing staff training would also be provided.
But Bramley & Stanningley councillor Kevin Ritchie (Lab) said local opposition still remained and proposed the 11pm limit. There had been 25 objections to the original 24-hour application from residents, Bramley & Stanningley councillors and Leeds West MP Rachel Reeves.
Cllr Ritchie told the meeting that staying open until midnight ‘would have a significant impact’ and be ‘totally unacceptable’, particularly in light of people leaving a nearby pub at closing time and potentially coming to the store for more alcohol. He added:
“There are still concerns from neighbouring properties over noise, with people coming and going and vehicles arriving and leaving. Doors will be slamming, car radios will be on. It’s a residential area.”
Councillors sitting on the licensing committee felt it unreasonable to allow the many residents living close to the shop to be subject to noise until late at night in order for one business to develop. They said that limiting the sale of alcohol to between 6am and 11pm would reduce the impact of noise.
The applicant does have the right to appeal against the decision.