Events caterers get liquor licences

Three new liquor Licences for mobile bartending services were granted following Thursday’s annual meeting of the Liquor Licensing Board of Grand Cayman.

Brian Barnes of Barnes Bartender Service was granted a retail liquor licence, as was Sean Collins of Mise en Place. Mr. Simon Welds of West Church Street, West Bay was granted a Retail Liquor Licence and a Music and Dancing Licence following decisions made by the board in closed deliberations.

The annual Liquor Licensing meeting took place on Thursday at Customs Headquarters. The applications for new licences had been made as a result of the lifting of the moratorium on the granting of new licences, which came into effect on 18 July, 2006.

Chairman Mitchell Welds stepped down from his role during the hearing of his relative, Simon W. Welds’ application. Deputy Chairperson Lynn Bodden-Smatt took over the Chair’s role for this application.

Mr. Welds said his plan was to work with promoters and organisers of events, because, he said, it is a viable business to be in. He also would cater private parties.

Having the controlled sale of alcohol at some of these functions or events could help to alleviate some of the underage drinking going on, he said.

Mrs. Bodden-Smatt asked if he would have a full bar available and if he would ask for identification from customers, to which he replied ‘yes’ to both.

‘I’m really confident there is a market for this type of business,’ he said.

‘Getting better control at these parties is what it’s all about.’

Mr. Collins of Mise en Place said he was seeking the licence because of client demand and in an effort to develop the company, which is now in existence four years. Their business involves doing hors d’oeuvres and dinners for private homes, offices and government functions.

The main purpose of seeking the liquor licence is for catering weddings, dinners and parties, he said.

‘The demand is there for a full bar service for my company,’ he said.

With wines, it would be nice to be able to educate clients on why he had chosen a certain wine to go with a certain food, he added.

Mr. Barnes of Barnes Bartender Service said he needed the licence for his business. He accused the board of taking his licence away from him previously.

Chairman Mitchell Welds clarified the situation. He said that Mr. Barnes had been granted a temporary licence in 2004. However, the law requires that a temporary licence expires at the next annual session, and it had expired the end of September last year. Mr. Barnes then had no licence and a new one could not be granted because of the moratorium.

However, with the recent lifting of the moratorium he was now entitled to his application for a new licence.

Mr. Barnes said he wished to continue the operation of his business which has run for some years, catering for events in private homes, for the government, banks and various businesses.

‘For the past year I was forced to operate without a licence,’ he said.

Chairman Mr. Welds pointed out that Mr. Barnes had been granted an occasional licence periodically.

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