The Crate Escape Wakefield: New alcohol sales warehouse to open at former Barnsley Road car dealership in Sandal

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Plans to open a new alcohol sales warehouse in Wakefield have been approved.

Councillors gave the go-ahead for the business, called The Crate Escape, to open at a former car dealership on Barnsley Road, Sandal.

A licensing sub-committee heard details of the how the business will operate after local residents opposed the application.

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They claim the it will add to anti-social behaviour in the area and put children at risk.

Plans have been approved to open a new alcohol sales warehouse at the former car dealership in Barnsley Road, Sandal, Wakefield. Pictured left, a stock image showing inside an alcohol sales warehouse.Plans have been approved to open a new alcohol sales warehouse at the former car dealership in Barnsley Road, Sandal, Wakefield. Pictured left, a stock image showing inside an alcohol sales warehouse.
Plans have been approved to open a new alcohol sales warehouse at the former car dealership in Barnsley Road, Sandal, Wakefield. Pictured left, a stock image showing inside an alcohol sales warehouse.

Martin Swaine, managing director of The Crate Escape, said the company specialised in bulk sales of alcohol to traders but the premises would also be open for retail sales to members of the public.

He told the meeting he had 36 years’ experience in the licensed trade.

He said: “I have an excellent track record working with responsible authorities.

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“I have always operated within the licensing guidelines and I have never had an application refused.”

Two complaints were made against the proposals on the grounds that the operation will add to crime and disorder in the area.

An objection to the council from one resident said: “The proposed premises are within 400 yards of three establishments who sell alcohol from early until late already, with disorderly and ant-social behaviour ensuing in the vicinity of Busy Corner, Portobello estate and Manygates Park.

Residents already deal regularly with broken bottles, vomit etc.”

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Describing how his business will operate, Mr Swaine said: “It’s quite a unique format. It’s actually very simple.

“Customers will buy anything from a case to 700 cases, including wines and spirits.

“To shop with us you almost certainly need a car.

“We are generally open less hours than normal. Typically our branch in Huddersfield opens at 11am and closes at 7pm.

“Some people travel between 50 and 100 miles to use our outlets.

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“This is a business for the whole of Wakefield and surrounding areas, not just a business for Sandal.”

Mr Swaine said a dedicated premises supervisor would be on site at all times during opening hours, with staff operating a ‘challenge 25’ proof of age policy.

He told the meeting he intends to increase the number of CCTV cameras at the site which can be accessed by West Yorkshire Police officers.

Councillors heard the new business will create between 15 and 20 new jobs.

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Mr Swaine added: “I do understand that people have objections but I am here to respectfully alleviate those concerns.

“The suggestion that we will cause an increase in crime, disorder, nuisance and somehow endanger children is pure conjecture.

“There is simply no evidence to support this. The responsible authority here is the police. They are satisfied with my application and have not raised any concerns regarding anti-social behaviour.”

No one attended the meeting to speak against the proposals.