Dublin store seeks pub licence to aid shoppers’ partners

Spouses and partners of customers in one of Ireland’s leading stores will be able to quietly anaesthetise themselves in comfort in anticipation of the shopping bill, a judge was told today.

Circuit Court president Mr Justice Raymond Groarke was told this was part of the plan of Brown Thomas in Dublin’s Grafton Street in its application for a legal facility that will ensure it a full pub license when plans to refurbish its third-floor restaurant are completed.

Constance Cassidy SC, counsel for Brown Thomas, said the store had a wine license in its restaurant for the last 40 years and wished to improve matters for their customers and in particular for partners and spouses waiting around while shopping was completed.

Ms Cassidy, who appeared with barrister Nicola-Jane Andrews and Compton Solicitors, said Brown Thomas & Co Ltd had bought out and extinguished a full pub license from Falcon Irish Pubs Limited which owned Ned McKnights in Main Street, Cappamore, Co Limerick. The extinguishing of an existing pub license is a necessity for the granting of a new license elsewhere.

Lorraine Bedford, health and safety compliance manager with Brown Thomas, told the court the store wished to make a full drinks menu, including beer and spirits, available .

Frank Kenny, of Kenny Kane architects, designers, planning consultants and licensing specialists, produced historical maps showing developments at the Grafton Street-Wicklow Street development over the last 300 years.

He said since the early 1700s maps showed various developments up to the acquisition by drapers Switzer & Co of sites for development in the area. Switzers was taken over by Brown Thomas.

Mr Kenny told Ms Cassidy it was clear from the maps that the buildings, which included two old pub licenses in Wicklow Street had been demolished to facilitate construction of the Switzer block.

Judge Groarke granted the store a declaratory order.


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