Oakridge College, the local council ward committee, Northwood School and Virginia Preparatory School have all voiced objections to the bottle store at Checkers, Virginia Circle, and want an interdict shutting it down immediately pending a review of the approval of the licence by the board.
While Oakridge College and the ward committee say they were aware of the licence application and objected, the other schools, all less than 1km away, say they were not even informed as is required by law.
The urgent Durban High Court application, “brought in the interests of the safety and well-being of children in the area”, deals with the old Liquor Act which directs that the board consider the effect of any licence on places of worship and schools in the area.
The new act is more stringent and simply outlaws any licence being granted within 500m of a school.
In his affidavit, which came before Judge Dhaya Pillay on Monday, Oakridge principal and ward committee secretary Daryl Franks said the act stated that a licence could only be issued to premises near schools and churches if it was “in the public interest” and would not disturb the peace.
“It is our contention that the granting of the licence does not comply with this,” he said.
“The reason for our objection is that since the closure of the previous liquor store on the same premises there has been a decline in the number of drunk vagrants at the Virginia soccer ground (used by the college for sport), the Virginia bush and around other schools.
“We said there was no need for another liquor store in Durban North because, at the time, there were already 10 in the area.