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Dublin: 4°C Thursday 20 January 2022

This English village is about to allow alcohol sales for the first time ever

Bournville, which was founded by the teetotal Cadbury family, was the last remaining “dry village” in England.

BirminghamBournvilleShops Source: Gavin Warrins/Wikimedia

A NEWSAGENT HAS been given permission to sell alcohol, ending a rare 120-year ban in the last remaining “dry” village in England, officials said today.

Bournville, a suburb of Birmingham, was founded at the end of the 19th century by the Cadbury family – owners of the famous chocolate brand – who were Quakers.

No pubs or licensed alcohol shops have ever been allowed in the village of 25,000 inhabitants, which was built to house Cadbury’s factory workers and declared booze-free by the teetotal family.

Bournville councillor Rob Sealey said the decision was “catastrophic”, telling the Birmingham Mail: ”This goes against 120 years of history and heritage in Bournville.”

maryvale The Mary Vale News shop, on Mary Vale Road in Bournville. Source: Google Maps

But Kamal Sharma, the 38-year-old owner of the Maryvale News, shop said he was just trying to save his business.

I’ve tried to diversify by selling fruit and vegetables but no-one bought them.
I asked my customers what they wanted and they were unanimous in wanting somewhere nearby to pick up a few beers or a bottle of wine.

Laburnum Road, Bournville - sign - Alcohol Restricted Area Source: ell brown

Birmingham councillor Lynda Clinton said concerns had been raised about “anti-social behaviour, crime and disorder”, and the potential impact on Bournville’s “unique character”.

But no objections were raised by police and “local residents who attended today’s meeting were strongly in favour of the application being approved,” she added.

Contains reporting by AFP.

Read: A Welsh town has just appointed its first resident jester in 700 years>

Read: Calling all Irish expats – You won’t be able to get real Cadburys any longer>

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Dan MacGuill

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