Trimley St Mary: Three Mariners village pub set to reopen after ‘shocking’ underage sale scandal

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The prospective reopening of a village pub, forced to close after selling alcohol to minors, has been met with the “strong support” of community leaders.

Enterprise Inns, which owns the Three Mariners in Trimley St Mary, has announced it is in “final discussions” with a potential new publican. The pub chain has also applied for a new premises licence, after its former tenants had their licence to sell alcohol revoked following “persistent sales” to children.

“We look forward to seeing the Three Mariners open under new management as a great community pub for the residents of Trimley,” said a spokesman for the company said.

The announcement has been met with “delight” from district councillor for Trimley St Mary, Graham Harding who has offered his “full support” to the new tenants.

“The pub has been there for generations and generations,” he said. “It’s very suitable for reinvestment - the area in the back is very large - and I’m delighted that it will be taken on by new tenants. I would like to wish them all the best, they have my full support and hopefully that of the village too.”


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The historic building, which Mr Harding understands to have taken its name from Trimley born explorer Thomas Cavendish and his successful circumnavigation of the globe, closed in September. Its tenants of eight years, Dave and Debbie Atkinson, had their licence taken away by the district council at the request of Trading Standards.

The couple had sold alcohol to underage volunteers during two separate test purchasing operations conducted in February and May, despite receiving advance notice, written warnings and guidance.

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Councillors on the licensing sub committee said the “shocking and disappointing” practice amounted to “serious and blatant illegality”.

Trimley parish chairman Colin Jacobs has expressed hopes that the new tenants can put an end to the problems of the past.

“It’s always a shame when pubs close and this has always been quite a rough and ready pub but I wish the new owners all the best,” he said.

Mr Harding was also keen for the new management to “adhere to the rules and regulations of the licensing authority”. Consultation on the premises licence application runs until November 25.

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