Alcohol licence bid by Market Drayton bistro is rejected

A Market Drayton bistro’s bid for an alcohol licence has been rejected over noise and odour concerns.

Heidi O’Neill, who owns Rumbling Tummies Cafe and Bistro, was seeking a premises licence in an effort to diversify the business, but the application sparked objections from neighbours and environmental health officers.

Ms O’Neill told a Shropshire Council licensing sub-committee hearing earlier this month that the application was not an attempt to move the business towards becoming a drinking establishment.

But the hearing panel has now issued its decision not to grant the licence on the grounds of preventing public nuisance.

Six members of the public had objected to the application, citing fears over noise and a potential increase in cooking odours.

Two neighbours attended the hearing and told the panel any increase in noise would have a “significant detrimental impact” on their lives.

Environmental health officers Matthew Clark and Robert Bowland also made representations to the panel, saying the bistro was “in the wrong building and in the wrong location to become a licensed premises”.

Ms O’Neill said she had no intention to have customers “getting hammered”. Conditions proposed by the applicant would ensure that alcohol could only be served alongside a meal, with the exception of a maximum of six people at any time to be served a drink without ordering food, out of a maximum capacity of 25 customers.

Opening hours were proposed to be 9am-10pm Monday to Thursday, extending to 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays, which was a reduction in the hours originally applied for.

Mindful

A report from the panel, made up of councillors Keith Roberts, Les Winwood and Dave Tremellen, said: “The sub-committee noted submissions made by the applicant in relation to the business and what she was trying to achieve and considered she would manage the premises responsibly to promote the licensing objectives of the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety and the protection of children from harm.

“However, they were not satisfied that the conditions proposed by the applicant would allow her to promote the licensing objective of the prevention of public nuisance.

“The sub-committee were mindful that consideration should be given to the prevention of public nuisance and that any conditions put in place ensures prevention, rather than relying on other means of dealing with breaches of the licence should it be granted.

“The sub-committee noted the location and layout of the application premises and that no noise impact assessment had been carried out at the premises to determine the effect on neighbouring properties, with (next door neighbour) Mr Phillpott stating that in its current guise, noise can be heard in his property.

“The sub-committee also considered the concerns raised by Mr Bowland and Mr Clark in relation to noise and odour nuisance and their professional opinion that the building and current extraction system are not suitable for a licensed premises.

“The sub-committee were not satisfied that the conditions proposed by the applicant to mitigate noise or odour nuisance or any additional or alternative conditions they may add to the licence if it were to be granted, for example, the potential burden of the installation of a commercial kitchen extraction system, would be sufficient to promote the licensing objective of the Prevention of Public Nuisance.”

The applicant can appeal the decision to the magistrates court within 21 days.

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