A corner shop in Wolverhampton that was caught selling alcohol to a 16-year-old will have its licence reviewed by council bosses. During investigations conducted by Trading Standards, staff at the Premier Convenience Store in Clark Road, Whitmore Reans, were witnessed selling alcohol to underage customers on several occasions.
The shop is also known as Tettenhall Supermarket and Threshers Wine. In a report to the council’s licensing committee, senior Trading Standards officer Nicola Biddle said: “On January 24, 2020, information was received alleging that single cans of alcohol were being sold from the Premier Convenience Store.
“On December 15, 2020, during a Challenge 25 survey, a young looking 22-year-old adult attempted to purchase alcohol from the shop to establish if staff made a point of checking identification when customers are buying age-restricted products such as alcohol. On this occasion the volunteer was not asked their age, to lower the mask they were wearing or to show identification. They were able to purchase a single can of high-strength alcohol, namely Dragon Stout (7.5% ABV).
“Then on February 1, 2021, an officer from Trading Standards wrote a letter for the attention of the premises licence holder and designated premises supervisor (DPS) Amandip Singh Ajimal, advising of the outcome of the Challenge 25 survey and providing comprehensive advice on how to comply with the laws governing the sale of age-restricted products,” she added. “On November 2, 2021, a single can of Stella Artois lager (4.6% ABV) was sold to a 16-year-old volunteer on behalf of the council. No attempt was made to ask her age, ask for identification, or to ask the volunteer to lower her face mask to study facial features.
“This volunteer was refused age-restricted products at four other shops that evening. The sale was made by a shop assistant,” said the report. “Officers from Trading Standards and West Midlands Police went into the shop after the sale to discuss what had happened with the sales assistant. It was noted that there was no premises licence or refusals book available to inspect. A trader’s notice was left.”
Section leader for licensing Amitabh Singh said: “The licensing authority has concerns over the premises licence holder and DPS Amandip Singh Ajimal, as the evidence provided by Trading Standards within their application indicates that he is not upholding the licensing objectives of Prevention of Crime and Disorder and Protection of Children from Harm, and therefore putting the public at risk. The evidence shows a repeated and blatant disregard for public safety.”
Representations supporting the licence review were also submitted by West Midlands Police and Public Health. The council’s statutory licensing sub-committee will discuss the application next Thursday, June 30.