New Kwiki Mart in Southsea banned from selling booze 2am-7am after Portsmouth councillors shown videos of people urinating
VIDEOS of people urinating in the street, playing loud music and being involved in ‘intimidating behaviour’ have seen a store banned from selling alcohol in the early hours.
At a hearing on Thursday, a Portsmouth City Council licensing sub-committee agreed to ban sales at New Kwiki Mart in Albert Road, Southsea, between 2am and 7am in response to complaints it was fuelling anti-social behaviour in the area.
Councillor Claire Udy, its chairwoman, said the issues were not ‘entirely attributable’ to the 24-hour store but that it was contributing to them, warranting the reduction in hours.
‘The sub-committee was satisfied it was appropriate to take steps to address the extent to which the sale of alcohol at the premises was aggravating these issues in this location during the time identified,’ she said.
An extra requirement for qualified door staff between 8pm and 2am on Fridays and Saturdays has also been introduced.
The hearing was called by Karen Whiteaway, who lives opposite, in response to ‘all-night gatherings’ that had led to ‘several’ incidents being reported to police.
‘I get that this is a convenience store and someone's living but this is only convenient for the drunks and a big inconvenience for the residents living in the area who shouldn’t have to live with this anti-social behaviour,' she said.
Police have recorded five incidents ‘directly linked’ to the store so far this year and 13 others with indirect links.
Hampshire police did not support calls for any action to be taken.
Solicitor Jon Wallsgrove, who represented the shop's owner Panchalingam Aranan, said there ‘had not been a shred of evidence’ showing alcohol being sold at the shop to people causing issues and called for no action to be taken.
‘There is no link to what happens outside and the sale of alcohol,’ he said at Thursday's hearing.
‘We accept that on occasion that there is anti-social behaviour outside the shop and (Mr Aranan) wants it no more than anyone else.
‘Cutting his hours back on the premises licence would be a punishment for something which is not his responsibility.’
But Cllr Udy said footage shown at the meeting, in combination with complaints made by people living in the area and ward councillor Hugh Mason, justified new restrictions.
‘The sub-committee was satisfied that the evidence did show, on the balance of probabilities, that alcohol was indeed being purchased within the store by those outside causing nuisance and disorder,’ she said.
‘It is agreed that the causal link between the licensable activity and the nuisance has been established.’
The store, which also faced a review of its licence in 2014, can appeal to magistrates to overturn the ban.