I think without doubt that West Ealing Neighbours has had more questions about street drinking and 24-hours off-licences than anything else since we were set up eight years ago. For West Ealing, the single biggest cause for concern is probably having two 24-hour off licences within almost 100 metres of one another and right by Dean Gardens. The Council’s draft policy recognises the problems caused by the availability of alcohol and the impact this has on street drinking but the key question is will anything be done about it?
The Council’s presumption seems to have been to grant nearly all alcohol licence applications regardless of how many off-licences are already in an area. The draft policy talks about Cumulative Impact Areas where granting any new alcohol licences could make matters worse and the Council being able to refuse any new applications on this basis. West Ealing high street would surely be such an area and this new policy would be of some help in stopping the spread of off-licences. The best way to get something done is to make your views heard. By all means tell us what you think – is there a problem and what can and should be done about it? But also, have a look at the Council’s draft policy and complete their online questionnaire