Wolverhampton shop's alcohol licence renewed despite residents' fears

A Wolverhampton shop plagued by anti-social behaviour, drug taking and crime has had its alcohol licence renewed despite the objections of local residents.

The Childs Avenue shopping parade. Picture: Google
The Childs Avenue shopping parade. Picture: Google

At a meeting of the city council’s Statutory Licensing Sub-Committee on Wednesday, members agreed to grant a premises licence to the Childs Avenue Convenience Store in Woodcross, Bilston.

Before making their decision, committee members heard a number of residents living nearby had objected to the licence application from proprieter Vimalan Kumaralingam.

Both the licensing authority and West Midlands Police had mediated with Mr Kumaralingam’s agent Patrick Burke before agreeing conditions and granting approval.

Conditions included the store having prominent signs requesting customers to have regard for local residents when leaving the premises, a supply of adequate bins and the enforcement of the Challenge 25 policy being in place.

Objections to the proposal had been received from a number of residents who wished to remain anonymous.

In written correspondence to the council, one said: “I object to having another off-licence around here – there is too much anti-social behaviour and there is already an off-licence on the parade."

Another said: “I have been a resident here for more than 20 years and believe that one off-licence is enough. To have another would bring more noise, rubbish and anti-social behaviour.

“We already have a pizza establishment that results in a lot of youths hanging around outside and rubbish.

“I have to live here and it is already noisy and disruptive, with people sitting outside my house drunk and smashing bottles. Please think of us residents with our children that live here."

A further written objection stated: “I have elderly parents who live on Childs Avenue. We do not want another off-licence.

“Anti social behaviour is really high and the crime in the area is rising. I believe one off-licence is enough on this road.

“We object to having another licensed premises on this road and also I believe there’s a lot of drug dealing happening in the parade. I feel vulnerable and frightened when I have to take my parents to the chemist.

“I also believe my parents’ friends and neighbours are very much against and object to another off-licence in the area.”

The sub-committee said that, with the agreed modifications, the premises licence could be granted.

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