BISHOP'S Waltham's new convenience store is one step closer to opening after being granted a premises license.

Sainsbury's, which is taking over the former Budgens in Winchester Road, has permission to sell alcoholic products between 6am and 11pm.

The application was given the green light at a city council licensing sub committee on September 21 – despite opposition from the parish council.

On behalf of Bishop's Waltham Parish Council, Cllr Robert Shields said: "The whole village is welcoming the arrival of Sainsbury's with open arms.

"But the parish council wishes to restrict this license to 10pm to maintain the social ambience of Bishop's Waltham.

"Budgens was only open until 10pm and this is what we expect."

A representative for Sainsbury's, who was not named at the meeting, replied: "Budgens did in fact have a license until 11pm but chose to close at 10pm.

"We know that this is expected of Sainsbury's, as stated in the letter sent out to residents, and this is what the company plans to do. The later time on the license is just for flexibility.

"The intention has never been to mislead, but I can accept there could have been better communication."

Cllr Shields said that the company should only have applied for the hours they needed.

He said that if they wanted an extension it could have gone before committee again.

Committee members Cllr Fiona Mather, Cllr Derek Green and Cllr Roger Bentote approved the application.

This is because it met all of the licensing criteria and could therefore not be refused.

The license does not jeopardise the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance, nor the protection of children from harm.