Re Powers Supermarkets Ltd
1982 WJSC-CA 1391
JUDGMENT OF MR. JUSTICE McWILLIAM DELIVERED THE 17th DAY OF FEBRUARY 1981.
This matter has come before me by way of appeal from an Order of the Circuit Court Judge for the South-Eastern Circuit made under the provisions of section 15 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act, 1960, declaring that part of premises known as Hanover House, Carlow, would be fit and convenient to be licensed for the sale of intoxicating liquor for consumption on the said part of the premises if the premises are altered and constructed in accordance with the plans produced to the Court.
The Applicant, Powers Supermarkets Limited, is the proprietor of a large number of mixed trading centres, in Dublin and through-out the country, of the type known as supermarkets. Of the Applicant's supermarkets, between fifty and sixty have licences attached to them for the sale of beer and spirits for consumption off the premises, and the Applicant is anxious to obtain a similar licence for Hanover House. It was stated in evidence that the Applicant has a licence, described as a wine licence, in respect of Hanover House but I am not clear what is the nature of this licence. Having regard to the provisions of section 61 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act, 1927, and section 28 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act, 1962, it would seem that this must be a wine retailer's on-licence. If this is correct, it illustrates one of the many anomalies in the patchwork of licensing statutes from 1833 to 1877, but is not otherwise relevant to this appeal.
Another anomaly is the cause of the difficulty in this case. Section 62 of the 1927 Act makes provision for the grant of a certificate for an off-licence in lieu of an on-licence in respect of premises situate in a county borough. As already stated, the Applicant only requires an off-licence in respect of Hanover House, but Carlow is not a county borough so that section 62 of the 1927 Act does not apply to Carlow, notwithstanding the quite considerable size of the town. Therefore, although the Applicant has established that there has been the necessary increase in population required by section 2 of the Licensing (Ireland) Act, 1902, as amended, and has obtained a publican's licence for extinguishment in lieu of which a new licence may be granted under section 2, the Applicant cannot obtain an off-licence in lieu of the publican's licence.
Under these circumstances, in order to carry on the business of selling intoxicating liquor for consumption off the premises as it is carried on in almost every supermarket in the cities, the Applicant has applied for a certificate that the entire food department at Hanover House would be fit and convenient to be licensed for the sale of intoxicating liquor for consumption on the premises. In other words, the Applicant is seeking an ordinary publican's licence although the intention is to concentrate on the normal supermarket business of sale for consumption off the premises.
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