A food retailer in Bishopbriggs will be able to display an increased range of alcohol for sale having received approval from the local licensing board.

M&S Simply Food in Strathkelvin Retail Park sought permission from East Dunbartonshire Licensing Board for another extension to its alcohol section, which it requested due to a refurbishment which will close its cafe and create additional space for stock.

One expansion had already been granted in June but a further alcohol display unit was subsequently added to the plan. The new total floor space permitted for alcohol display will now increase to 72.5 square metres.

As the store is not located in an area of overprovision no objections were raised by statutory consultees although the health and social care partnership requested measures be taken to reduce visibility of the alcoholic beverages, such as children and those in recovery, and any sampling comply with the recommendations of  industry regulator the Portman Group.

M&S agreed to these requests, saying they were already in line with company policy. It also does not advertise alcohol in ways which could exploit or encourage vulnerable customers to buy it at any of its stores.

The company’s solicitor explained that the main purpose of the alcohol display stands is to make seasonal products more accessible to customers without having to reach for high shelves.