By News Reporters

Mini-cab office.
Westminster Council refused permission to sell alcohol from the rear of the mini-cab office. Pinnacle Cars is also operating without planning permission.

Westminster Council has refused an application for a licence to sell alcohol from the rear of a mini-cab office in Riding House Street. The Fitzrovia Neighbourhood Association and local residents had made objections to the application.

The licensing sub-committee of 14 March heard that the applicant, who did not attend the hearing, wanted a licence to sell alcohol over the internet with the drinks distributed from the premises using cars and scooters but customers would not be allowed to visit the premises. The committee also heard that the mini-cab office was operating without planning permission. 

Miss Aroush Amin applied to sell alcohol 24 hours a day and seven days a week at Call for Drinks, 35 Riding House Street. In support of the application she submitted a photograph and drawing of the mini-cab office operated by Pinnacle Cars. However, planning permission for the mini-cab office had been refused by Westminster Council in December 2012. Westminster’s planning website states that an appeal has been lodged against the decision.

Prior to the hearing, the applicant amended the hours for deliveries of alcohol from a 24 hour a day operation to Monday to Saturday (08:00 to 23.00 hours) and Sundays (10:00 to 22:30 hours).

Richard Brown a solicitor from Westminster Citizens Advice Bureau attended the hearing on behalf of the Fitzrovia Neighbourhood Association. Mr Brown asked the licensing sub-committee to refuse the application to prevent public nuisance from delivery vehicles and to protect children from harm as there was no age verification procedure in place to prevent alcohol being bought by people under the age of 18 years.

Westminster Council’s licensing news of 15 March 20123 reported:

The Sub-Committee refused the application, taking into account the significant concerns of Environmental Health, Metropolitan Police and local residents. In particular there were doubts as to whether conditions could be attached to the licence which would address the problems of noise nuisance, particularly in respect of the vehicles being used. It would be difficult to enforce when the cars left the premises. The Applicant had also not set out what procedures would be put in place to verify the age of those consuming the alcohol as it could potentially be delivered to a child under 18 in the event an adult had ordered it from a specific address.