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Plans on hold for gin bar in Wolverhampton

By Joe Sweeney | Wolverhampton | News | Published:

Ambitious plans to open a specialist gin bar and distillery in Wolverhampton have been temporarily put back, after the city council’s licensing bosses expressed concern over the owners meeting necessary legal requirements.

The gin bar would be in Victoria Street

Crazy Gin Ltd, which is run by husband and wife team Bruce and Paramjit Nagra, have applied for a premises licence to trade from the unit that formerly housed Cosmo Coffee in Victoria Street.

However, the council’s section leader for licensing, Elaine Moreton, said she felt the application in its initial form was “incomplete and needed tidying up”.

Both parties agreed to meet for mediation to iron out a number of issues surrounding business hours, the specifics of trading and the actual plans for the building itself.

The council’s statutory licensing sub-committee agreed to adjourn so this could be conducted before resuming the hearing on Wednesday, October 16.

Crazy Gin owner Bruce Nagra said: “Our aim is to be distilling on the premises so groups of people can come in and watch the process and experience tasting sessions.

“This will also be visible to passers-by on the street, so we are hoping that this will attract more people into the city to come and use the shopping centre as well.

“We will also have a bar on site and as the business expands we will open on select days as well as conducting off sales from the premises. Until then we will keep the premises locked and people will be admitted by invitation or appointment. At full capacity we will be able to accommodate 60 people.

“This will be a reputable, specialist business that will provide visitors with a unique gin experience. We are not looking to encourage quick drinkers, so there will be no special offers, discounts or happy hours.

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“My wife and I sold our house in London to come back to Wolverhampton with the sole purpose of setting up this company, which we did in 2016. It is our absolute passion.

“We are the world’s first British Indian distillers and make the world’s first clear Lassi Gin, which fuses British and Indian cultures to create a range of flavoured gins.

“Since becoming established, we now sell to Harvey Nichols and a number of other leading retailers such as Debenhams. We have also hosted events for Porsche UK, Manchester City Football Club and various A-list celebrities.”

Before agreeing an adjournment, Mrs Moreton told the committee: “Whilst I welcome this as an exciting new venture in the city, I do have concerns that Mr Nagra has applied for the off-sale of alcohol when there is a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) in place for the city centre – which in this case prohibits the consumption of alcohol in the surrounding areas.

“There is insufficient evidence within the current operating schedule to show how the applicant and designated premises supervisor (DPS) will promote all four licensing objectives.”

The council’s statutory licensing sub-committee will resume the application hearing on Wednesday, October 16, following the agreed mediation process.

Joe Sweeney

By Joe Sweeney
@JoeSweeneyLDR

Local Democracy Reporter covering Wolverhampton.

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