Small grocery shops in Lerwick are to receive a refund of part of their premises licence fee which will bring them into line with rural shops, a meeting of the licensing board decided on Monday.
The meeting heard that as part of the new licensing laws, rural shops where alcohol sales were not the main focus were treated as visitor attractions and only had to pay £200 for a premises licence.
By contrast, small Lerwick shops were charged £800. The three shops, Brucefield Stores, Lochside Stores and Alex Morrison’s, which were charged the higher fee will now be due for a refund.
Meanwhile the board granted extensions in licensing hours to three premises.
Lerwick eatery Osla’s and La Piazza will now be able to serve alcohol on the premises from 11am until midnight and Tagon Stores in Voe will be allowed to sell off-sales until 8.30pm every night.
The Whalsay Boating and Sports Club has been granted an extension on Saturday night until 2am, although board chairman Cecil Smith warned about the decision “opening the floodgates”. Members decided all future applications of this type would be looked at on their merits.