A controversial plan to allow drinks to be served at a Herefordshire village post office, shop and café has finally been decided on.

Herefordshire Council’s licensing subcommittee rules this morning (February 2) that Marden Post Office can serve alcohol, but only via table service, and only with food from the café’s kitchen.

“The subcommittee fully recognises the concerns raised in representations and the reasons for them, but considers that the application with the additional conditions will promote the licensing objectives,” it chair Coun Paul Andrews said.

The subcommittee last month put off a decision on the bid by the store’s owner Blue Star Power in order to visit the post office, which it did last week (January 26).

Marden parish council clerk Jeremy Stephens claimed today that the approved plans for the recent expansion and refurbishment of the post office “bear no relation to the plan provided with the [licensing] application”.

The parish council had previously expressed several concerns over security, noise, the toilet facilities and the inappropriateness of allowing drinking at a shop used by children.

But the applicant’s legal representative Adrian Roberts said: “We are unaware of any planning issues.”

“This an exciting opportunity, a perfectly proper application, and we hope that locals and tourists who visit the area enjoy the new venture,” he added.


The premises licence will now permit both on and off-sales of alcohol from 8am to 11pm, and until 10:30pm on Sundays.

Subcommittee member Coun Polly Andrews urged the applicant: “If you’re going to have staff in the kitchen plus customers sitting and drinking, you need more than one toilet.”

But this did not form a condition of the change to the licence.

Want to stay up to date with all the latest news for your local area? It's easy, just sign up for our free weekly email newsletter here and all the important stories that matter to you will be delivered straight to your inbox.