Store licence plan opposed by university

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PLANS to sell late night booze in a former bank close to Sheffield University are facing strong opposition from campus managers.

Sainsbury’s wants to turn a former branch of HSBC on Upper Hanover Street into a supermarket with a licence to sell alcohol until midnight.

University estates and facilities management chief Keith Lilley has reacted with horror to the proposals for the premises, which are close to the university tram stop.

Mr Lilley said there were already problems in the area due to drinking and anti-social behaviour.

He said: “The university has suffered from numerous problems in this location, from the theft and damage of property to human excrement on and around the properties.

“The introduction of alcohol sales, and to such a late time, will encourage further activities of this nature.

“The sale of alcohol without the university’s policy of responsible retailing of alcohol will encourage further binge drinking and both affect public safety and increase the instances of public nuisance.”

In its application, Sainsbury’s says it will take several steps to ensure public safety in the area. The supermarket giant said it would maintain an ‘adequate’ number of staff on the premises during operating hours.

The firm also says it will install CCTV cameras agreed with police which will operate at all times when licensable activities are taking place.

But university bosses say they were also concerned about traffic and parking.

Mr Lilley added: “The university believes that if the proposed licence is granted, it will affect both public and student safety due to the traffic issues this use will cause and the introduction of an unsuitable clientele mix.”

The application will be discussed by members of the council’s licensing committee at a meeting to be held at the Town Hall next Tuesday.