Off-licence appeals for ‘inappropriate’ metal shutter

Drinks 4U in Warwick Road has appealed for a metal shutter to be installed after Warwick District Council refused permission for one.
Drinks 4U in Warwick Road has appealed for a metal shutter to be installed after Warwick District Council refused permission for one.

A prominent Kenilworth off-licence has appealed to central government to allow it to install a metal shutter.

Drinks 4U, which opened at the end of last year in Warwick Road, had planning permission for the installation of a shutter refused by Warwick District Council, who claimed it would be “inappropriate” for the area despite security concerns from the shop.

In a statement, planners said: “The Kenilworth Design Guide identifies that in areas of high vandalism, external grilles may be acceptable, however, there has been no evidence presented to show that the site is located in such an area.

“The Kenilworth Design Guide also states that extensive use of external roller shutters appears overbearing and may promote anti-social behaviour.

“The roller shutters are considered to be out of keeping and inappropriate within the street scene, located within a prominent position in Kenilworth, which detracts from the character of the area.

“Approving the application would set an undesirable precedent which could lead to increased levels of crime and vandalism through a deadened street frontage.”

Not content with the refusal, owner Mr D Rai decided to appeal to the Secretary of State to overrule the council’s decision.

The appeal states: “The visual impact of the roller shutters is extremely limited. The shutters will be open for the majority of daylight hours seven days a week, when the shop is trading.

“During hours of darkness, when the shutters are closed, internal illumination can significantly mitigate the deadening effect that is typical of solid roller shutters.

“The shutters have been the subject of discussions with the local police officers, who support this level of security on a shop of this nature.”

Before the district council made its decision, Kenilworth Town Council raised objections to the shutter.

Members said it would set a precedent and were concerned with how it would affect the appearance of the street. They also said other off-licences in Warwick Road have never had metal shutters before.

Kenilworth resident Paul Thompson, of Harger Court, also said: “The installation of metal shutters in this location will totally change the street scene.

“The numerous people passing will be greeted with a view of an uninviting town centre that appears to have security issues.

“If this application is allowed then others will follow and the street scene will soon resemble a war zone when the shutters are closed.”

Anyone wishing to make comments on the appeal should email them to CT1@pins.gsi.gov.uk or visit the website https://acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk