"BOOMING ST. CLAIR"
QUESTION OF SUNDAY TRADING,
SUPREME COURT DECISION - WANTED.
An interesting case connected with the salo of soft drinks at St. Clair on Sundays was heard in tho City Polico Court this morning, when .Edward Ssarl was charged before Mr E. W. Burton, S.M., that on Sunday, December 13. in viow of a. public place, "he did keep -.men his shop for tho purpose of trading. Defendant, for whom Mr W. L. Mooro appeared, pleaded not guilty. Senior-sergeant Dart said that defendant was charged undor section 17 of the Police- Offences Act, Tho facts wero that ho kept a «hop which, opened on to tho cornea' of Queen Alexandra- at-rect and Forbury road, at St. Olair, Inside tho shop door* there was a sort of movable screen, and near thai, screen there was a barn*l, which- presumably contained some non-alcoholic liquid, and some glasses oculd be eeen. A* constable- visited tho shop and drew defendant's attention to a recent decision in the matter of Sunday trading', but defendant alleged that ho was quite within his rights, n-nd stated that ho intended to keep open his shop for the purpose of selling soft drir.ks. Two young fellows came in and \v&t& served with lomonade or come. similar drink at tho counter. The seniorsergeaut added that it seemed to him thatthe whole question was om* of whether the Felling constituted a work_ of necessity or not, Tbero had l>een magisterial decisions in somewhat similar cases, but those decisions were conflicting. Tho Magistrate re-marked that in certain cafes the evidence varied. Senior-sergeant Dart admitted that it did vary a. little. Evidence- was given by Constablo Drury, who, under cross-examination, admitted that bands played at St. Clair occasionally, evidently for Lire purpose of attracting people there. S-?nior-tergeant Dart interposed that they should live on music, and not on lemonade, to which Mr Moore retorted that music was the soul of love, and they did not want thatat St. Clair. In outlining the defence, Mr Moore declared at tho cutset that as in -a miml.Ter of eases dealing with Sunday trading the question that arose in the present case was really as to what- was a work of necessity, and said that the decisions of the differentmagistrates in New Zealand appeared to be conflicting. A. similar case had been argued recently before Mr Bartholomew, S.M., and it appeared that while he- considered that selling over tin? counter was not a, work of necessity, tho serving of afternoon tea might be considered a work of necessity. Senior-sergeant Dart: Not in a- public place. ' Mr Moore continued that defendant stocked biscuits and confectionery, and while he had himself prohibited their sale en Sunday, he considered that the sale of soft- drinks constituted a work of necessity under section 17 of tho Police Offences Act, Under the proviso it would be noticed that tho works of necessity must, be construed in eomc broad manner. The trams were allowed to run. and wore run for the purpose of attract inc.- people to St. Clair. The Corporation bad booming St. Clair, and wove anxious to sm that the seaside resort became atrraetivc to the people. Counsel submitted that it was just as much a- work of necessity for people going to St. Clair to get reasonable drinks- there as it- was for them to carry them with shem. It was not- everybody who v. anted to take "tea. As n- matter of fact, on «iw .Sunday defendant sold as many as 1-30 dozen of aerated waters, and there were other shops open as well. Some peoplo spent tho whole day at the beach, jmcl it was only reasonable that they should get what refreshment they desired there. Even the Corporation, when they built the -pavilion at .St. Clair, were in the habit of selling drinks on .Sunday. They arranged for bands to play a-t'iSt. Clair to popularise it, and it- stood to reason that if the people -could not get what they required, then tboy would"" not go there. peonle preferred soft drinks to tea,
The Magistrate remarked that there- w,-, a difference between w'hat constituted Was tho drinking of ginger heer or any aerated water a- necessity? Would counsel say that ice cream was a necessity ? Counsel declared, without much hesitation, that ice liv.nm was not a necessity, and would bo better out of the country, while
Sonior-s-nrgeant Dart laughingly made a reference to catarrh of the sT-omach. Finally, the Senior Sergeant said he would admit nil that had been said about popularising the place, but tliero was a way in which, defendant .and others could itrct over the difficulty, and that was by building rooms not abutting on a public place. The Magistrate, after commenting upon tho practice ofeewhere. said that he must hold that defendant had been guilty of a broach of the law. He would bo fined £l, with costs (7b). Mr Moore intimated that bin client wished to got a decision of the Supreme Court, and leave to appeal was desired. Leave was granted, security for appeal •being 'fixed at £lO.
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"BOOMING ST. CLAIR", Evening Star, Issue 15704, 19 January 1915