Safety fears as Falkirk Kelpies visitor centre gets drink licence

The Kelpies new visitor centre will soon be selling alcohol at evening events

The Kelpies new visitor centre will soon be selling alcohol at evening events

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The new Helix Visitor Centre has been granted a provisional on and off sales licence despite concerns that alcohol, children and water make a dangerous mix.

At a meeting of Falkirk Council’s licensing board today members heard the centre was due to open next week and was looking to sell beer, wine and even a Kelpie brand whisky.

Alcohol sales at a location so close to canals and water features started alarm bells ringing for the board, especially when the applicants, Falkirk Community Trading Ltd, initially asked for permission to sell alcohol on site from 11am to midnight.

When members learned there was provision for outdoor drinking until this time, they decided to cut the hours back to 10pm.

Noting that children were allowed on the premises until the terminal hour, Councillor Sandy Turner asked for assurances from the applicant measures would be taken to ensure the safety of adults and children when the new venue begins to host wedding receptions and other events.

He said: “Children and young people, alcohol and water – it’s a dangerous mix without having some sort of stewardship on the premises.”

The applicants, including Helix director of operations Alan Hunter, assured members each event which takes place at the visitor centre would be risk assessed and necessary precautions, including the provision of additional security resources, would be taken.

It was stated the new venue had capacity for 233 people, but events would only hold a maximum of 150.