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Late-night bar would threaten Boston Spa Post Office

by Wetherby Liberal Democrats on 25 April, 2019

Wetherby Liberal Democrats have opposed the evening licence for a proposed Boston Spa cafe-deli

If Wetherby Liberal Democrats have one overriding priority for Boston Spa it is to protect the town’s Post Office.

That explains our opposition to an application for a drinks licence, plus music, for the property next door.

Post offices are closing all over the country – and we have one to treasure. Lib Dem candidate in the May 2 elections for Leeds City Council, David Hopps, ended a vox pop on the High Street by saying: “We can’t play fast and loose with our Post Office. It helps make Boston Spa what it is. Protecting it has to be our priority.”

This is a copy of David Hopps’ objection to the licensing panel on behalf of Wetherby Liberal Democrats.

You can send your views to the licensing panel at entertainment.licensing@leeds.gov.uk quoting:
Ref number PREM/04336/001 – Boston Spa High Street

“I am writing on behalf of Wetherby Liberal Democrats to object to this licence application

“After considerable thought, and also vox popping this morning in Boston Spa High Street, my feeling is that this Level 3 late-night drinks licence application is wrong for this site, much more inappropriate than the 3 excellent cafe bars that are now part of Boston Spa life.

“A vibrant cafe culture is beneficial to the prosperity and contentment of both Boston Spa and Wetherby: of that I have no doubts. However, this application is, in my view, considerably more problematic.

“The initial intention of Wetherby Liberal Democrats was also to take guidance from Boston Spa Parish Council and I recognise that the Parish Council has not opposed this A3 licence application other than recommend a reduction to 11pm.

“But I’ve got major reservations for two reasons:

“(1) The dubious way in which the successful planning application 18/06581/FU for a A3 restaurant (referenced as a deli-cafe by the applicant at the time) increasingly took on the feel of a day-night cafe bar, with the emphasis at night very much A4 not A3, once planning permission had been obtained. I invite the licensing committee to consider whether the planning and licensing system has been approached with acceptable clarity and openness and whether the current applicant intends to pursue the A3 objectives as stated when planning permission was granted. The view of a considerable section of Boston Spa society is that this is not the case. At the very least, the A3 licence must be rigorously imposed.

“(2) The fact that the premises is next to Boston Spa Post Office. For the good health of the town, the retention of Boston Spa Post office should be the overriding priority and nothing should be granted that puts the survival of this Post Office – with live-in accommodation – under any threat whatsoever. I note that it is already up for sale and,  if sold, the survival of the Post Office cannot be guaranteed in a town that has already lost its banks and cash point facilities. A night-time bar next to the Post Office would be wholly inappropriate.

I am aware that licensing objections are generally considered for four reasons: the prevention of crime and disorder; public safety; the prevention of public nuisance; the protection of children from harm.

  • Noise control measures next to a Post Office with live-in accommodation will be inadequate especially but not only considering the proposals re open doors and/or windows
  • A third cafe-bar within 30 yards would change the nature of the High Street by congregating groups in one place and increases the probability of public disorder, and anti-social behaviour, especially late at night.
  • Public nuisance can legally include either disturbance affecting a few people or the potential low-level disturbance affecting the whole community, such as the very real risk of the closure of a Post Office with all the negative results this would bring.

“On behalf of Wetherby Liberal Democrats, I therefore ask the licensing committee to give serious consideration to these points and prioritise its decision based on protecting the long-term survival of Boston Spa Post Office.

David Hopps, Chair, Wetherby Liberal Democrats

One Response

  1. Judith Barker says:

    There are more eating places in the village then services. We do not need anymore.