Agenda and minutes
Venue: Committee Room 1, The Shire Hall, St Peter's Square, Hereford, HR1 2HX
Contact: Caroline Marshall, Democratic Services
Apologies for Absence
To receive apologies for absence.
No apologies for absence were received.
Named Substitutes (if any)
To receive any details of Members nominated to attend the meeting in place of a Member of the committee.
There were no substitutes present at the meeting.
Declarations of Interest
To receive declarations of interests in respect of Schedule 1, Schedule 2 or Other Interests from members of the committee in respect of items on the agenda.
There were no declarations of interest made.
To consider an application for a new premises licence in respect of ‘Forge Filling Station, Wormbridge, Hereford. HR2 9DH’.
Members of the licensing sub committee of the council’s planning and regulatory committee considered the above application, full details of which appeared before the Members in their agenda and the background papers.
Emma Bowell, Technical Licensing Officer, presented the report and it was noted that a site visit had taken place on 14 February 2019.
Trading standards confirmed that their representation was now withdrawn as the conditions had been agreed.
The licensing officer outlined the licensing authority’s objection to the application and highlighted the following:
· The objection was a point of law and in particular section 176 of the Licensing Act 2003.
· In order for a licence to be granted at a garage, it had to be demonstrated that the primary use of the garage was for the sale of non-fuel items.
· There were stated cases which the subcommittee needed to take into account and these were listed in the agenda papers for this item.
· The view of the licensing authority was that the figures supplied by the applicant indicated that the primary use of the premises was as a petrol station.
· The petition which had been submitted by the applicant was not relevant to the application.
· That it was disappointing that the agent for the applicant had not engaged with the licensing authority. If the applicant’s agent had contacted the licensing authority, a licensing sub committee meeting may have been avoided.
Mr Nick Semper, the applicant’s agent then addressed the committee and highlighted the following:
· The grocery side of the business had expanded and would probably expand further as there were approximately 120 houses due to be built in the area.
· There are other businesses on the site and there was not just a convenience store.
· There was public support for the application which included Kilpeck Parish Council. There were no public objections to the applications.
· The licensing authority had used snapshots of the data supplied which were not representative to the usage of the premises. The dates selected by the licensing authority were a Friday, Saturday and Monday which included days when families traditionally do not use a local shop but go to a large supermarket.
· The Forge Filling Station’s primary use was as a grocery store and not a garage. Based on the details provided by the applicant 80.2% of the transactions were for non-fuel items.
· It was the intensity of sales which should be calculated and not the gross sales.
· There was ample parking at the Forge Filling Station.
· The sub committee should treat the Forge Filling Station the same as other premises in the county.
Following questions, it was confirmed:
· On appendix 7, the figure on the left hand side under each category of sales represented the number of transactions.
· The percentage of sales for fuel on 13 July 2018 equated to approximately 70% of the sales.
· It was estimated that the sale of animal feed would be 8% but accurate records are not kept.
· The monthly accounts do account for each transaction but do ... view the full minutes text for item 45.
To consider an application for a new premises licence in respect of 26 Eign Gate, Hereford. HR4 0AB.
Members of the licensing sub-committee from the council’s planning and regulatory committee considered the above application, full details of which appeared before the Members in their agenda, the background papers and the supplement issued on 4 March 2019.
Prior to making their decision the members heard from Emma Bowell, Technical Licensing Officer, and Sergeant Duncan Reynolds. The committee also heard from the applicant.
West Mercia Police outlined their representation in connection with their objection to the application which included:
· Granting the licence will undermine the licensing objectives.
· There are other licensed premises in the area, one of which was a large national supermarket.
· The area was at saturation point and the granting of a further premises licence would undermine the licensing objectives
· There is significant antisocial behaviour during the day time which centred around the plinth outside All Saints Church.
· This anti-social behaviour is having a negative impact on the public using the area
· Steps were being taken to either prevent or discourage the behaviour. The steps included proactive visits to the other licensed premises; restrictions on the sale of single alcohol containers etc.
· The premises licence holder has indicated that that they will be on the premises at all times and this was not practicable nor achievable.
· There is no recorded history of a licensed premises at the address. However, the following number of incidents have been recorded in the area in the following years:
o 2015 - 512
o 2016 - 518
o 2017 - 575
o 2018 - 426
o 2019 up to 20 February 2019 - 50 incidents
· The decrease in the figures were due to changes in recording incidents and the proactive work of the police. Officers can record their own observations of the incidents and in 2018 there had been 115 alcohol related incidents and in 2019 up to 20 February 2019 there had been 47 incidents alcohol related incidents.
· There was a common pattern of behaviour which consisted of purchasing alcohol early in the morning and then get involved in arguments with school children; elderly and commuters; There was also begging in order to purchase items such as food, drugs etc. The homelessness or street beggars could obtain food from the local church.
· The anti-social behaviour had a negative impact on the public and local business.
· Eign gate was a hot spot for anti-social behaviour and the sub committee may wish to consider the impact of licensing another premises in the area.
The applicant then addressed the sub committee and highlighted the following:
· There were other shops in the area which had a licence.
· The shop had been opened for three weeks and the applicants had not seen any signs of crime or disorder.
· It was a family business and they work in the shop all day.
· The shop was opened between 1000 hrs and 1900 hrs
· They had only seen the police once (yesterday) and had seen no incidents.
· The intention was not selling large amounts of alcohol but the shop needed ... view the full minutes text for item 46.
To consider an application for a review of a premises licence in respect of: ‘mila, 102-104 Belmont Road, Hereford, HR2 7JS called by West Mercia Police.
Members of the licensing sub-committee from the council’s planning and regulatory committee considered the above application, full details of which appeared before the Members in their agenda, the background papers and the supplement published on 6 March 2019.
Prior to making their decision the members heard from Fred Spriggs, Licensing Officer and Sergeant Duncan Reynolds, West Mercia Police. The committee also heard from June Clarke, the agent representing Mr Hersh Mohammad
West Mercia Police outlined their representation in connection with the review which included:
· Mila is a small Polish convenience store situated on Belmont Road.
· The premises had a history of criminal activity and breaching the conditions of the premises licence which had resulted in previous reviews of the licence.
· It was recognised that the current operator at the premises was not connected to the previous reviews of these premises.
· On 12 December 2018 at 1245 hours an intelligence led search of the premises was undertaken by HMRC.
· As a result of this search, 32 bottles of non duty paid bottles of vodka were seized and this is subject to a separate investigation.
· Under the Licensing Act 2003 and the statutory Section 182 Guidance, this is a serious matter and revocation even at the first instance should be considered by the sub-committee.
· Mr Hersh Mohammad was not the premises licence holder at the time of the search but the police have been informed that he was the manager of the premises. As such Mr Hersh Mohammad should have or would have knowledge of the alcohol on the premises.
· It was noted that Mr Hersh Mohammad purchased the premises on 23 November 2018.
It was clarified that the premises licence had been surrendered on 5 February 2019 and on 6 February 2019, a request to transfer the premises licence to Mr Hersh Mohammad. On the transfer form, the box that the transfer take place with immediate effect had been ticked and therefore Mr Hersh Mohammad was the current premises licence holder.
The sub committee then heard from Ms June Clarke, the agent for the applicant who explained:
· Mr Hersh Mohammad had been in the United Kingdom for the last 17 years. He had worked for 16 years in the same factory in Blackburn. Mr Mohammad had an impeccable record.
· Mr Mohammad had worked in the Mila store for the last eight months and had no managerial duties and was not responsible for purchasing stock.
· Mr Hardi Mohammad had asked Mr Hersh Mohammad whether he wished to purchase the shop.
· Mr Hersh Mohammad had purchased the premises for £10k on 23 November 2018.
· Three weeks after purchasing the premises, HMRC had searched the premises and had found the 32 bottles of non duty paid vodka. Mr Hersh Mohammad had no knowledge that this alcohol was non duty paid.
· All of the stock in the premises is now purchased online so there is now a clear record of where it had been purchased from.
· Mr Hersh Mohammad fully understands his responsibilities under the ... view the full minutes text for item 47.
To consider an application for a review of a premises licence in respect of S&S News, 55 Broad Street, Hereford. HR4 9AB called by West Mercia Police.
This item had been withdrawn from the agenda prior to the meeting.