Cleethorpes takeaway's plans to deliver alcohol with hot food put on back burner
A TAKEAWAY owner's plans to deliver alcohol along with hot food have been put on the back-burner.
As reported, The Chicken Stop, in Grimsby Road, Cleethorpes, opened after being granted a licence to sell hot food to eat in and takeaway – and alcohol to be consumed on the premises – in September this year.
North East Lincolnshire Council's licensing sub-committee heard the owner of the restaurant, Bilal Bas, had hoped to vary the licence to allow customers to order alcohol and food to be delivered to their homes until 3am from Thursday to Sunday.
Currently, food only can be delivered until midnight.
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Mr Bas had also hoped to sell alcohol to be consumed off the premises from the outlet until 11.30pm – in an extension of his current licence, which allows customers to drink on the premises until 11.30pm.
However, the committee heard Julie Pelling, the owner of neighbouring Top Tips by Julie, had objected to the plan on the grounds it would increase antisocial behaviour in the area. In a letter to NELC she said: "We regularly have problems with drunks standing in our doorway and, as it is, every morning when I come to open up my shop, I am greeted by litter from the kebab shops and beer cans, bottles, sick and wee from people using my door as a toilet."
As a result, Mr Bas offered to amend his plan to limit the sale of alcohol for consumption off the premises to home delivery only.
And Dieter Nelson, speaking on behalf of Mr Bas, told the committee his client had already taken steps to ensure any change would not cause antisocial behaviour.
He said: "My client is trying to diversify and make a viable business in a difficult time for traders.
"Nine CCTV cameras have already been installed to combat antisocial behaviour."
He added that the business model was "tried and tested" in other parts of the country – though it would be a first in his client's business portfolio – and that all front-line staff would be Challenge 25 trained.
However, the committee felt the business had not been up and running long enough for them to be confident the operation would not have a detrimental effect on the public.
Chairman of the committee Councillor Ray Oxby (Lab, South) said that after "extensive discussions" the committee had agreed to extend the firm's licence to deliver hot food until 3am from Thursday to Sunday, adding it wished to "support growth".
But he said fears about the scheme impacting on children and vulnerable adults – as only the person answering the door would be subject to Challenge 25 checks – meant they were not confident about allowing off-licence sales as yet.
Speaking after the hearing on behalf of his client, Mr Nelson said he believed the application would be resubmitted at a later date following consultation with licensing officers and Trading Standards.