Shop given alcohol sale ban by council

A Morpeth store has had its licence to sell alcohol revoked.

Thursday, 22nd December 2016, 4:53 pm
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 2:13 pm
Brought to you by the Morpeth Herald.

A licensing hearing at County Hall heard how Stobhillgate Corner Shop on Shields Road was the subject of a test purchase operation earlier this year, when a member of staff sold alcohol to a 16-year-old.

The operation followed ‘numerous’ complaints dating back to February 2015 to both Northumberland County Council’s Trading Standards team and Northumbria Police around under-age sales of cigarettes, alcohol and scratch cards.

The store was visited on many occasions and during one visit, a staff member admitted to selling single cigarettes – which in itself is illegal.

County councillor Liz Simpson, chairman of Safer Northumberland partnership, said: “We have worked hard with our partners in Northumbria Police to try and resolve this on-going issue for both local residents and the wider community.

“We have held meetings with the trader and despite assurances to change its working practices, we have continue to receive complaints.

“This has been on-going for nearly two years now and a ban on alcohol sales is now in force.

“Hopefully, this should serve as a reminder to all those who sell alcohol that with a licence comes responsibility and we will take action against those who fail in these responsibilities.”

The business now has 21 days to appeal.

Northumbria Police Chief Inspector Steve Readdie: “We are pleased with the recent decision of the county council’s licensing sub-committee to revoke this shop’s licence to sell alcohol.

“We believe it sends a clear message to businesses that they must take their responsibilities seriously to ensure that children are not able to buy alcohol from shops in Northumberland.

“We know that under 18s who drink alcohol are more likely to become involved in anti-social behaviour and that by drinking, they can also make themselves vulnerable to harm.”

If you have under-age sale of alcohol concerns about a shop, call your local neighbourhood policing team on 101.