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Police call for review of alcohol licence for Wisbech store after 'losing confidence' in its owners

PUBLISHED: 17:14 29 November 2013 | UPDATED: 17:14 29 November 2013

The Rima shop in Lynn Road Wisbech

The Rima shop in Lynn Road Wisbech

Archant

A Wisbech convenience store could have its licence stripped away after selling a bottle of wine to two under age girls just 18 months after the shop's licence was put under review.

The owners of Rima Stores have been called to a hearing where police look set to call for their licence to be either taken away or substantially suspended.

The hearing has been called because police and trading standards say the Lynn Road store owners have “persistently failed to adhere to the licensing objective in respect of children and have lost confidence in the premises ability to consistently prevent such sales.”

In February last year the store’s licence was given strict conditions in a bid to stop under age alcohol sales, yet in spite of these, an under age test purchase in September this year failed when two 16 year old girls managed to buy a bottle of wine.

A report from police says that “this premises has not learnt form intervention and it is felt there is a strong risk that sales will continue in future where other premises consistently pass such tests.”

Licence holder Narendra Patel has been called to attend a Fenland District Council Licensing Committee hearing because a report to be discussed says: “By selling alcohol to underage people the premises in question is directly and unequivocally breaching the licensing objective of the protection of children from harm.

“And by the very nature of the impacts and effects of alcohol consumption, the objectives of public safety, prevention of public nuisance and the prevention of crime and disorder are also breached by selling to underage children.”

Trading Standards say the shop does not have adequate systems in place to prevent underage sales, despite receiving support and advice about CCTV cameras and staff training.

A report from them says: “A review is being submitted because all other methods - both advisory and enforcement - have failed to put a stop to underage sales from the premises.”

In February last year a number of measures were put in place in a bid to prevent under age alcohol sales, including being asked to keep 31 days of CCTV footage, which did not happen.

They were ordered to stop selling single cans or bottles of beer, lager or cider and banned from selling beer, lager or cider stronger than 5.5%, both of which were not adhered to.

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