A store in a new Dundee neighbourhood has been granted an alcohol licence after warnings residents would otherwise need to walk nearly two miles along a dual carriageway to the nearest shop.
Sajid Sharif had appealed to Dundee City Council’s licensing board for a licence in his Spar shop in Dykes of Gray, pointing out it was the only shop in the new housing development.
Janet Hood, speaking to the board on behalf of Mr Sharif, said: “Dykes of Gray is on the very outskirts of Dundee and it might seem to not look as if it is in Dundee because it is away from the city.
“The Spar is now open and trading and there are no other shops or public facilities on the estate.
“The nearest shop is 1.6 miles away and the only way to access it is by car, which doesn’t fit with the council’s green agenda, or by footpaths.
“Should people decide to take the pedestrian route, they have to go down a path to the Swallow Roundabout and then walk along the verge of a dual carriageway to get to the retail park, or cross the dual carriageway and go into Invergowrie.
“Neither route is safe for pedestrians.
“This premises will offer much-needed facilities for the residents, and alcohol is a part of that mix.”
Ms Hood added she had set up two separate petitions in the housing development to show how much the alcohol licence was needed.
She continued: “The petition had 190 signatures, which is basically nearly everyone, in support of the application for an alcohol license.
“A second petition was signed by the workmen on the estate as they will be there for a long time and said they would like to purchase their groceries, including alcohol, on their way home.
“This is a completely new part of the city of Dundee and the NHS has not made an objection, I assume because they can see this is an exemption to the [over-provision] policy.”
Councillor Roisin Smith called for the licence to be granted, saying the community was clearly keen for it.
However Councillor Ken Lynn said: “I disagree that it is ‘catastrophic’ for the nearest licensed premises to be 1.6 miles away.
“In other countries the sale of alcohol is severely restricted like in Canada and Scandinavia.
“This will add another off-licence to an area where there is already over-provision, and that area is the city of Dundee, so I will be opposing it.”
However Councillor Lynn was voted down by seven votes to one and the licence was granted.