Supermarket alters alcohol bid

A SUPERMARKET giant has amended its licensing application for a new store at Stobhill.

Sainsbury’s, which is preparing to open a shop at the former Black Swan pub in Shields Road, had been seeking permission to sell alcohol from 6am to midnight, prompting complaints from local residents.

Morpeth Town Council also opposed the move, saying the hours would be excessive and could result in public disorder, and they should be similar to times accepted for businesses in a residential area and in common with other local shops.

Councillors also said delivery hours should be appropriate for a residential location.

The supermarket has now amended it application and is seeking permission to sell alcohol from 7am to 11pm, seven days a week.

The town council’s Planning and Transport Committee was due to reconsider the matter at a meeting last night.

However, local resident David Mash remains opposed to the bid.

“Sainsbury’s is going to reduce the hours from 6am to midnight to 7am to 11pm. I don’t agree with that at all. I don’t think it will make a ha’penny of difference,” he said.

“I think there will be problems with disorder.

“There will be a licensing hearing and I’m going to be there. I don’t know when it will be yet, but I will have my say.”

Sainsbury’s has said it will trade no later than the Black Swan did and it is a responsible retailer that is committed to operating shops with the upmost consideration for neighbours. It intends to operate a ‘Think 25’ approach when selling alcohol.

The application will be determined by Northumberland County Council.