A HOCKEY club’s hopes of a drinks licence for its new headquarters has been labelled as “unacceptable” by the management of Felixstowe Academy.

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Felixstowe Hockey Club wants to sell alcohol at the clubhouse alongside its all-weather pitch – but the premises are on the academy’s Maidstone Campus.

Because of the dispute – unless it can be settled beforehand – a hearing will now have to be held before Suffolk Coastal’s licensing and health sub-committee on December 17 to decide the issue.

The hockey club says the sale of alcohol is essential to enable it to hold fundraising events, tournaments and possibly members’ parties to increase club revenue and help the club to grow.

It says all staff selling alcohol will be trained and training will be reviewed six monthly to ensure staff are up to date with the latest legislation.

It has drawn up plans to safeguard youngsters that meet all the current regulations.

But Felixstowe Academy said the sale of drinks on four evenings was “not acceptable”.

The site was a Suffolk Coastal “zero tolerance” area for alcohol and the granting of a licence would go against the directive.

“The fact that the building is based in a school site, where our students aged from 11 to 19 attend communty sports fixtures and academy evening events, presents a potential safeguarding risk,” said the academy.

“We are also concerned that there may be occasions when the academy and hockey club both have events on during the evening, which could lead to public safety being compromised by the increased use of the site by cars coupled with alcohol consumption.”

Several residents, including councillors John Goodwin and Doreen Savage, have written to the sub-committee to say there have never been any problems with anti-social behaviour or other nuisance at the club’s present HQ at the Dellwood Avenue sports ground.

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