Thursday, March 21, 2013
A bid to allow a new café in the Manor Gardens to sell alcohol has been opposed by the town hall.
Last month, members of the town’s planning committee gave their wholehearted support to a plan transform the former Tourist Information Centre (TIC) into tearooms by the summer.
It follows the closure of the TIC in 2011 - the district council-owned building has remained unused ever since.
Debra Quine proposed serving drinks, sandwiches, some hot food and cakes from the premises and some outside seating to the rear of the café’s entrance.
And, on Monday, councillors duly backed her bid for a premises licence, which would allow opening hours from Monday to Sunday from 8am to 9pm.
But with the application they were surprised to see the addition of a bid to sell alcohol, both inside and outside the building from Monday to Sunday from 11am to 8.30pm.
Deputy mayor Bill Nash said: “This is the Manor Gardens and it would be strange if we encouraged the retail sale of alcohol in the Manor Gardens either on or off the premises.
“It sets the wrong picture. I do not think we want to see the sale of alcohol in or outside of the TIC building.”
Councillor Malcolm Mitchell said: “Maybe we could ask to restrict the sale just inside the premises, when served with food.”
Councillor Sandy Sutton said: “All they will sell is sandwiches; they haven’t got the kitchen facilities so it will be hot drinks, cold drinks and cold food and maybe some pasties. It is a café. Generally speaking café’s in parks and gardens do not sell alcohol.”
Richard Turner said the Manor Gardens should be included in the police’s alcohol free zone.
Cllr Nash said: “I don’t believe it is practical to restrict drinking alcohol inside. The inside of the building is very small.”
The application will now be considered by East Devon District Council.