A CAFE owner in Mumbles has rejected claims that extending her licensing hours could contribute to the return of the infamous ‘Mumbles Mile’.
Angharad Boo told a Swansea Council committee that Boo’s Kitchen was a small, independent café. “There’s definitely a different clientele to the Mumbles Mile,” she said, referring to the rowdy stretch of pubs and clubs of days gone by. The licensing sub-committee granted Ms Boo’s application to serve alcohol at the Woodville Road premises from 10am until 11pm Monday to Sunday. The cafe’s new opening hours are 8am until 10.30pm Monday to Thursday, and 8am until 11.30pm on Friday and Saturday.
Two objectors wrote to the council, claiming that longer licensing hours would disrupt residents’ lives. One wrote that “alcohol licences are being given out like sweets” in Mumbles over the past two years. “It seems as though if you start off as a cafe, apply for an alcohol licence, apply for an extension then change to a wine bar, it is easier to get permission,” they said. “The last thing we want is another ‘Mumbles Mile’ and the problems we had.” The letter added: “We will end up like St Ives [in Cornwall], full of Airbnbs, second homes and wine bars.” The other letter suggested that extending the hours would increase public nuisance, not prevent it, thereby contravening a council licensing objective.
After taking legal advice, the sub-committee agreed to extend the hours. Speaking on its behalf, legal officer Lyndsay Thomas there was no evidence of issues at the premises since it opened in 2012. She said councillors would have welcomed the chance to hear directly from objectors at the meeting, and noted that no responsible authority – such as South Wales Police – had opposed the application. She added that alcohol at Boo’s Kitchen was served to customers at tables, and the external area at the premises must not be used after 6pm.
Ms Boo, who took over the cafe last year, said it employed nine full and part-time staff, and that she planned to organise themed evenings on Fridays and Saturdays to start with.
She said complaints were “quite draining”, and she has installed a £2,000 extractor fan to try to resolve an issue.
She added: “We have really great local regulars.”