Castleford grocery store owner given permission to sell booze
and live on Freeview channel 276
Councillors granted permission for booze to be sold at the premises on Smawthorne Lane from 8am to 11pm every day.
Local residents and a councillor lodged objections to the plan over fears that it would lead to an increase in anti-social behaviour and street drinking.
Three members of a licensing sub-committee approved the application after hearing how West Yorkshire Police and the council’s own licensing department had raised no concerns.
Solicitor Andrea Forrest spoke at the hearing on behalf of applicant Dana Hamza Hama Marad.
Ms Forrest outlined a range of measures that will be in place to ensure that the store operates responsibly.
They include ensuring the premises are covered by CCTV cameras and having a ‘Challenge 25’ age policy.
Ms Forrest said Mr Marad planned to open a grocery store, called Family Food Stores.
She said he already operated three similar stores, employing 25 people, without any licensing issues.
Ms Forrest said: “He has a vast amount of experience.“He has worked in the licensed trade for around 12 years.
“He is a very diligent operator and has systems and checks in place to ensure that the licensing objectives are upheld.
“He makes it his business to know the local community.”
No one attended the hearing to speak against the proposals.
Richard Forster, councillor for Castleford Central and Glasshoughton ward, sent a written objection, stating: “Only a couple of hundred yards along the street, Sainsbury’s sell alcohol until late.
“Residents are always complaining about the late-night rowdy behaviour relating to alcohol and have been asking for the sale to be restricted until 9pm.”
An objection from a member of Smawthorne Welfare Action Team community group said: “We deal constantly with excessive littering, a considerable amount of which consists of cans and bottles purchased locally and drunk in the park.
“Broken glass is a particular problem as bottles are often smashed rather than disposed of in bins, causing a danger to children playing and dogs being walked in the park.
Addressing the concerns, Ms Forrest said: “There is no evidence that it is related to the shops in the area.
“Licensing law isn’t a tool to dispel all the problems in the area.
“There is no evidence and no reason to suggest that, if the licence is granted, there will be any of the problems that the objectors have raised.
“I do believe that if the residents and the councillor felt that strongly they would have attended today to put their case.”