27 Nov 2015

MK Convenience Store, alcohol license application

I recently objected to an application to sell alcohol on Oxton Road. That case remains outstanding but a similar application has been made for a premises on Borough Road and I have submitted the comments below.

Re: MK Convenience Store
391 Borough Road
CH42 0HA

Having consulted with residents I feel the public interest would be best served by rejecting the licence for this store for the following reasons:

1. There is a well established problem with street drinking in this area. I have witnessed this at first hand many times. Clearly another licensed premises will exacerbate this problem. There are established services in the immediate area such as the YMCA dealing with the fall out from alcohol consumption and we should support them by denying yet more access to cheap alcohol. We should also be mindful of our health related pledges in Wirral's five year plan which specifically aims to "reduce levels of alcohol related ill-health".

2. Alcohol is an undoubted contributing factor to the level of criminal activity in this area. Police figures confirm the high reported instances of crime and the contribution alcohol makes to the overall level of crime. Significant policing resources are required to deal with the adverse impacts that alcohol is having via crime and anti-social behaviour. In the circumstances, another off-licence will exacerbate this problem.

3. Alcohol consumption is a clear source of public nuisance in this area not just as a result of street drinking and anti-social behaviour. The broader environment suffers hugely and I get frequent complaints about the level of litter in the area much of which consists of discarded alcohol containers. For example I received the following message on Sep 21st:

Dear Pat,
Borough road from Charing Cross on the Oxton road side it's an absolute disgrace with thousands of beer cans and bottles right up to Wirral Spares. The bushes and trees are an absolute eye sore. Why is this allowed to happen time after time ?
J B. Ashford Road

4. There are already numerous retailers selling alcohol in the area.

I would conclude by quoting from a resident of Halcyon Road who responded to my request for comments on this application with the following:

As someone who lives in Halcyon Road, we already have enough trouble with under age youths being sold alcohol and it obviously contributes to the anti social behaviour that we suffer living here. I would deeply object to yet another shop selling alcohol as this area is bombarded with cheap alcohol, ready available, often sold cheaper than a non alcoholic drink. Also this area is blighted by litter from the local public houses, another venue selling what will probably be cheap cans and bottles will only increase the litter we all have to walk through.

Cllr Pat Cleary
Green Party Councillor
Birkenhead and Tranmere ward

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