Owners denied permission to sell alcohol without food before 10am
Megan's already has a restaurant in Wandsworth by Old York Road. Picture: Megan's
Wandsworth Council has approved a licensing application from Chelsea Fine Food Ltd to open a new Megan’s in Wandsworth on Garratt Lane.
The brunch spot has a “loosely Mediterranean menu” and has been given permission to sell booze from 9am to 11pm on Mondays to Sundays at the new branch.
But customers will only be served alcohol between 9am and 10am in the new restaurant with a meal, after the council’s environmental services officer raised concerns that the start time falls outside guideline policy hours. Current guideline policy for the start of alcohol sales in Wandsworth is from 10am.
Thomas O’Maoileoin, an agent speaking on behalf of Chelsea Fine Food, told Wandsworth Council’s licensing sub-committee that staff at other Megan’s in London have found it “much easier” to operate their sites if the opening hours match the times the venues can sell alcohol. The eatery serves brunch, lunch, dinner and cocktails at branches across London – including bottomless brunch on weekends.
Mr O’Maoileoin said, “The truth is that the sales of alcohol on other sites for midday, in fact, are very, very, very slim. But it is also correct to say that they do actually have people that on occasion, on whatever day of the week – it’s not weekend specific – will come in because they might be meeting an old friend and they have, what amounts to, it’s a bucks fizz, or they might have a glass of Prosecco. Those are the alcohols that are sold. We are talking about single figures but it is easier, has been easy on the sites that permits this to happen, for the staff and it’s easier just to have the opening hours and the sale of alcohol and other licensable activities all to match up.”
He said the restaurant has an “established reputation” and added that there had been no objections submitted to the council from residents.
A statement on the decision says, “The licensing sub-committee could not see any problems arising from customers being served with alcohol with a meal between 9am and 10am due to the nature of the business and its offering, which the applicant had demonstrated they are able to provide responsibly.” The restaurant will shut at 11.30pm every day.
There are already Megan’s in Balham and Battersea Power Station as well as on off Old York Road. Almost all Megan’s are in London, including other branches in Surbiton, Islington, Kensington, Wimbledon and Chelsea.
Charlotte Lillywhite - Local Democracy Reporter
July 11, 2022