Media release - issued 08 May 2017

Council and police check on alcohol sales to minors

Licensing officers from Rushmoor Borough Council have linked up again with Hampshire police to continue to check on sales of alcohol to underage young people in Aldershot and Farnborough.

Test purchases were carried out at 28 off-licensed premises on Wednesday and Friday of last week (26 April and 28 April). Although 18 premises passed the test - some of which had previously failed and have been working with the police and council to improve their processes - ten failed, selling alcohol to either a 16-year-old girl or a 17-year-old boy.

The council's licensing team and the police are now working with the off-licensed premises that made the illegal underage alcohol sales. This includes offering training for staff at the premises and making amendments to their licence conditions. This could also mean putting more stringent precautions in place, including keeping and monitoring a log of refusals and operating a "Challenge 25" policy. One seller was given a £90 fixed penalty notice because they had recently undertaken training.

Two of the premises caught this time had previously been caught selling alcohol to minors earlier this year. They will have their licence conditions tightened up further, which could include having a personal licence holder present at all time when alcohol sales take place.

Any premises that fail spot checks a third time are likely to have their licence for selling alcohol reviewed, which could lead to the licence being revoked, as was the case with The Station Corner Shop in Aldershot last year.

Similar test purchases were carried out in the towns in November and December last year, and February this year.

Qamer Yasin, Rushmoor Borough Council's Head of Environmental Health and Housing, said: "It's disappointing that more than a third of premises we tested, failed the spot checks. At this stage, we will be working closely with them to make sure there is no repeat, so we will not be naming them. However, I want to emphasise that both the police and Rushmoor Borough Council will be watching these premises very closely and we will not hesitate to take further action if they do not make improvements."

 
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