A primary school which claims it has problems with some parents turning up 'drunk' has objected to a nearby shop obtaining an alcohol licence.

There have been isolated incidents involving a small number of parents causing alcohol-fuelled disturbances and being abusive on the playground at Cotteridge  Primary School, said headteacher Jonathan Leonard.

Child services have been involved in one severe case while another parent has been banned from the school grounds at Breedon Road.

Mr Leonard has pleaded with a Birmingham City Council licensing sub committee not to grant Eden Manna Supermarket an off-licence arguing it would put his 420 pupils - including 73 vulnerable students - at 'significant risk of harm'.

Eden Manna with Cotteridge Primary School in the background. LDRS.
Eden Manna with Cotteridge Primary School in the background. LDRS.

He added: "It has been said (by the applicant) there is no relation between the shop literally 20 metres across the road from our school and parents possibly drinking outside of the gates, putting children at risk of harm.

"I'm afraid I disagree completely. Because parents do stand outside the school, especially in the summer and they do drink.

 

"The rights and wrongs of that are a big discussion but it's just a fact they do, and easy, quick access to alcohol to me is completely inappropriate in our setting."

 

Mr Leonard also pointed to the fact there were two vaping shops and a massage parlour on the same row of shops stating that an off-licence would add to the promotion of 'unhealthy lifestyles' to children 'every time they step out of school'.

He added: "Placing an off-licence within metres of a classroom to me, right under our nose as a school, completely undermines the messages we are trying to give to these children."

Eden Manna is visible from the entrance to Cotteridge Primary School. LDRS.
Eden Manna is visible from the entrance to Cotteridge Primary School. LDRS.

Eden Manna, which sells general convenience goods and African food, was also accused of being 'presumptuous' because it already has a bold yellow and red overhead sign which says 'Convenience store and off licence' although it was not suggested that they have actually sold alcohol before now.

The committee approved the application but stipulated that alcohol must not be sold before 5.30pm Monday to Friday, by which time pupils will have finished their school clubs and left the premises.

The shop is also not allowed to advertise alcohol from outside and the items themselves must not be visible from the street.

Anthony Gregson, Eden Manna's licensing representative, argued that the school's current issue with parents bore no relation to the shop while stating there would be good quality CCTV installed to improve crime prevention in the area.

Cllr Mary Locke (Lab, Stirchley) had backed the school's objection whilst also arguing the area has a 'terrible reputation' for crime and disorder which may or may not be alcohol-related.

She said she was 'pleased' the shop would not be able to sell alcohol before 5.30pm during the week.