Objection to bottle shop likely

COLIN WILLIAMS
Last updated 14:13 27/11/2013
upper hutt bottle store
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New venture: Plans are afoot to open a bottle shop where the CityStop convenience store is.

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Plans for an off-licence liquor store in central Upper Hutt looks set to be challenged.

Tony's Liquor Upper Hutt Ltd has applied to the city's District Licensing Agency for a bottle store, which would trade daily from 8am to 11pm.

Business owner Tony Loveday said  the location, on Wakefield St opposite McDonalds, was carefully chosen.

''We were not trying to upset anyone. It is not near schools and is not in a residential area,'' he said.

'''We will be a boutique bottle store, selling craft beers,  relying on professional service and [our] good knowledge and we will work on the basis of people respecting that. 

''We won't be able to compete with the big boys, we are under no illusion about that.''

Mr Loveday and Tony's Liquor operate in Wellington and elsewhere, but this is a ''first foray'' into Upper Hutt.

The business, at Shop 1, 168-172 Main St, has been operating as a CityStop convenience store for several weeks, and but the bottle shop would it.

Mr Loveday said the building had been empty for three years 

The business would help the city ''because it is a bit rundown at the moment . . . we are trying to rejuvenate it.''

Naomi Hutchinson, owner of Diva Beauty Therapy on the Min Street, said she would objecting to the application.

"We don't need another one,"  he said. '''What we need to work for Upper Hutt is good retailing.

"If we have bottle shops scattered through the community it makes it unappealing for business that operate after hours."

Approval of the off-licence would ''bring a seediness'' to the area, which would be counter-productive, she said. 

Submissions to the off-licence application need to be with Hutt City Council by the end of Tuesday, December 4.   

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- Upper Hutt Leader

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