AN award-winning pub landlord has insisted he does not plan on using a new licence to sell “slabs of lager”.
Concerns had been raised with Durham County Council over proposals to extend the hours for alcohol sales from the Three Horseshoes, in Leamside, near Durham.
But premises boss Daryl Frankland insisted the changes were intended to help the venue’s planned expansion into bed and breakfast rooms compete with other nearby offerings.
“We’re a public house, not an off licence as would imagine an off licence to be,” he said.
“We asked for an off licence because we will sell beer to be taken away by people, such as caravaners or campers who may have lunch and then want to take a couple of beers home.
“We’re also heavily into real ale, we’ve run the CAMRA North East Pub of the Year award, we’ve got our own microbrewery and we often get people asking if they can take our beer home.
“But we don’t sell slabs of lager and we don’t promote off sales.”
Mr Frankland, who also runs the Courtyard bar at Washington Arts Centre, was speaking at a meeting of the county council’s statutory licensing sub-committee, which was held by videolink and broadcast via YouTube.
The pub already has a licence covering alcohol sales, music and late night food.
The latest application sought permission to begin recorded music from 7am, which Mr Frankland said was to help him “stay on the right side of the law” by playing music or news broadcasts while guests have breakfast.
It also sought to extend alcohol sales by half an hour, from midnight to 12.30am – and 3.30am on New Year’s Day – to accommodate overnight guests.
However, he also told the panel he would be prepared to accept an amendment which would mean the extension only applied on weekends.
No objections were submitted by police or fire services, but concerns were raised by West Rainton Parish Council.
Parish councillor Avril Wallage said some fears had been allayed by Mr Frankland, but doubts remained.
She added: “The hours seem very late for and the concern is once the licence is granted then, presumably, those activities could change in the future if they’re still within the parameters of what’s been granted.”
The panel retired to debate in private, with a decision expected to be confirmed later.