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Aldeburgh: Concern after Tesco applies to sell alcohol until midnight seven days a week

PUBLISHED: 06:00 13 February 2013

An artist's impression of Tesco Express at Crossways Garage site in Aldeburgh

An artist's impression of Tesco Express at Crossways Garage site in Aldeburgh

Archant

SUPERMARKET bosses have come under fire after applying for a licence to sell alcohol and “late night refreshment” until midnight seven days a week.

A Tesco Express store was controversially given the go-ahead earlier this year for a derelict garage site in Saxmundham Road, Aldeburgh. A licensing application has now been submitted to Suffolk Coastal District Council seeking permission to sell alcohol from 6am to midnight Monday to Sunday. This would put Tesco in breach of its planning consent, which set opening hours of 8am-10pm six days a week, and 9am-7pm on Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Concerns were raised at a meeting of Aldeburgh Town Council on Monday night. Michael Kiff said he was “horrified”, while Marianne Fellowes, who is also a district councillor, said she felt, if approved, the licence would represent “unfair competition” and could lead to anti social behaviour.

Naomi Tarry, chairman of Aldeburgh Business Association, which together with the town council and Aldeburgh Society opposed the original application, said yesterday: “This is exactly the sort of move we were so concerned about.

“The new store is the thin end of the wedge and it vindicates our position in objecting to the planning application. We’re all left second guessing what Tesco’s next move will be. If the licence were granted it could become a destination for late night drinking and a place to get cheap hot food after pubs close, with all the anti-social behaviour issues that this could bring to local residents.”

People have until March 8 to send their views to the district council at licensing@suffolkcoastal.gov.uk. A spokesman said if there were relevant complaints a licensing hearing would be held in public. He said if the request was granted action could still be taken to stop Tesco trading outside the hours of its planning permission.

Tesco were contacted for a comment but failed to respond by the time of going to press.

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