Friday, 26 March 2010

Councillor Calls for Supermarket Booze Ban

The Lincolnshire Echo is reporting that alcohol should be removed from supermarket shelves in Lincolnshire to help prevent alcohol abuse, a senior Conservative county councillor has claimed.

Cllr. Mrs. Christine Talbot, Conservative (Bracebridge Heath & Waddington) believes a pilot scheme should be tested by supermarkets to see what impact taking booze out of stores would have on drinking habits within the county.

The paper reports that the County Council member has said her personal vision for the next ten years would also include raising the age limit to purchase alcohol from 18 to 21.

Cllr. Mrs. Talbot told the Lincolnshire Echo that action is needed to be taken to change the drinking culture which had developed in recent years.

Cllr. Mrs. Talbot is reported as saying:
"The average adult would go and buy a bottle of wine for the occasion, not buy wine with your shopping. I know it's cheaper to do both but sometimes when you are in the supermarket there is more wine than alcohol."
Cllr. Mrs. Talbot said she was concerned about the trend of 'pre-loading', which involves people drinking large quantities of alcohol at home before going out into pubs and clubs. She added it would be interesting to see if business in pubs improved as a result of any supermarket ban.

"Supermarkets could remove alcohol for a pilot scheme for six months and see how it affected sales.
"I think people would be in uproar and say it is unfair to do this to people who drink responsibly, while others might see it as a good idea."
The Lincolnshire Health Scrutiny Committee, of which Cllr. Mrs. Talbot is Chairman, decided on Wednesday to examine what programmes existed within the county to tackle alcohol abuse and how to understand the contrasting problems between rural and urban areas.
The review is expected to take between six to eight months.