A Boston shop controversially granted permission to sell booze could now lose its premises licence - which allows the sale of alcohol - after police said they found a number of ‘serious’ failings.
Owner Natalija Vincukova has already surrendered her premises licence on one NV Grocery Shop on James Street (which had been set for review), but still has her store on Carlton Road set to go before counicllors after police raised concerns.
However, Mrs Vincukova says she will fight the application.
In a document submitted to Boston Borough Council’s licensing department, Lincolnshire Police said that Mrs Vincukova and her husband Janis - who is also named on the licence - had ‘been trading irresponsibly and as such have failed’ to uphold all four of the licencing objectives. These are prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, prevention of public nuisance and protection of children from harm.
They claim instead, that they have ‘seriously’ undermined them and call for the premises licence to be revoked.
The police documentation also allege the changing or altering of use by and best before dates on food items.
When the Carlton Road store originally applied for a licence in January there was a groundswell of public opposition with an online petition receiving 907 signatures and a paper one submitted with 696 supporters.
The police applicationmakes note of this, saying: “It’s also clear that, despite the concerns raised by members of the public at the premises licence application hearing on January 15, the premises have been trading contrary to the conditions imposed to alleviate those concerns.”
The police application concluded that revoking the licence ‘should be the only outcome’.
The shop is set to go to a future licensing meeting with the deadline for representations being today (Wednesday).
Mrs Vincukova told The Standard she would be working with her solicitor to defend her premises licence.
She said she believed the documents related to incidents early on after the shop opened, including one time when a shop assistant ‘got confused’ over the amount of cans/bottles of alcohol they were allowed to sell. Conditions on the licence say she must sell alcohol in packs of four at minimum.
She said this condition had also caused her problems with customers, who were confused as to why she was not allowed to sell singular cans like other stores in the area, as well as when her supplier ran prices for single bottles or offers such as three-for-twos - which they advertise on the bottles but she cannot carry out. This she said had led to a loss of business.
She believed the accusations regarding food labels came from suppliers placing ‘translated’ labels onto products, which covered expiry and use-by dates. She said this issue had now been resolved.
She said that she believed in other areas she was doing well, and that recent age tests by Trading Standards had been passed. She did not believe the premises was noisy and said the shop was clean and didn’t have too many people congregating outside.