East Worthing trader launches petition against off-licence

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A TRADER has condemned plans to introduce a fourth off-licence to a road in East Worthing.

A planning application for a Mulberry Wines off-licence, which has stores across Sussex, has been made for Ham Road, which already has three shops within the area that sell alcohol – Co-op, Premier Express, and Best One.

Edmund Ranjith, who has run Best One since 2009, said another off-licence in the area could lead to increased street drinking and teenagers loitering on streets.

The 37-year-old said the proposed off-licence, which would be next door to his shop, would inevitably harm his and other local businesses.

To oppose the move, Edmund has started a petition against the plans, which after being started on Friday has been signed by more than 80 of his customers.

Edmund said: “There is already a Co-op, a Premier store and my off-licence in the area – we don’t need another one.

“People want things to be quiet without problems, but another off-licence could lead to more teenagers hanging around and more drinking problems in the area.”

Edmund said he was hoping the residents of Ham Road would unite against the plans, like people from Lyndhurst Road did when a similar application was turned down there last month.

He added: “My customers don’t want another off-licence, and, hopefully the plans will be rejected.

“Around 500 people signed a petition against plans for an off-licence in Lyndhurst Road, and, hopefully, people will do the same in Ham Road.”

Those who object to the plans have been told to write to Worthing Borough Council by July 23 by writing to The Licensing Unit, Worthing Borough Council, Portland House, Richmond Road, BN14 1HS.