Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

The Ham and High is reporting today that a Stroud Green Jeweller who was shopping at Waitrose Crouch End with her daugter was refused service on alcohol unless her daughter showed ID to prove she was over 18.

She was told it is store policy to ask for ID from anyone who looks under 18 and is accompanying an adult who is buying alcohol, in case the drink is for them.

Annie Mundy is reported as saying “This is just ridiculous and I think everyone in Crouch End will be outraged.

“I am her mother. If I want to buy a bottle of wine and give my 21-year-old daughter or 17-year-old son a glass then that is not illegal. It really made me angry.”

The cashier eventually agreed to let Ms Mundy buy the wine, but when when she later contacted Waitrose customer services they insisted this was store policy.

This reminds me of when I lived in LA in my twenties. I was flattered at the novelty of being carded when buying alcohol but very grouchy when Vons supermarkets told me that a UK passport was not sufficient ID (nor even apparently a US one). They insisted on a California Driver's Licence. Fortunately, a calm conversation with the store manager sorted it out.

I just gave Waitrose a quick ring to check on their policy. I was told that they do indeed have a policy, informed by the law,  whereby they can refuse to sell alocohol to someone if they think it's being bought for an underage person. However, I was reassured that in the normal course of events, there shouldn't be an issue for mothers oout shopping with their kids.

Assuming we have all the facts, probably a case of a good policy, poorly applied.

Tags for Forum Posts: crouch end, waitrose

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I've had this in Harringay Sainsburys.

I (aged 25) was asked for ID when buying a range of goodies including wine, which is fair enough (flattering really). However they also demanded ID from the friend I was with (also 25) despite the fact she was not the one buying the goods. Unfortunately she had not brought her purse with her (given that I was the one buying) and did not have any ID with her. 

The answer is if you are with a friend or relative who is under 18 - or has not got any ID - then don't let them stand in the queue with you!

Another good policy, poorly applied..... add a seven year safety margin. Then if you're not sure add another 10 year safety margin to that (if a cashier is 18 they may not be particularly capable of assessing the age of an adult). So the 35 year old woman in the queue in front of me at Sainsbury's was not allowed to buy a bottle of wine because the cashier thought she might be 25. As she said - I'm clearly not 17 am I? To which the cashier said no, but you might be 25.

And at 31 I came very close to being ID'd in sainsbury's for a bar of bailey's chocolate. Then she took a closer look at me and said not to worry :-D

Hugh* Perhaps we should honestly recognise alcohol as a mood altering/modifying drug. It causes a high albeit different to other drugs but still a high whatever way you look at it. Seen this way, we won't be offended when supply of alcohol is constricted for young people. Just as you wouldn't bring your kid to buy crack from your dealer and if you did they would probably raise an eyebrow. Good policy, poorly applied ? Definitely !

Why don't they stop selling alcopops, since I can't imagine many people over 18 actually drink them?

Unfortunately many parents do buy drink for their children - my son has been to parties where 'soft' alcohol is available for 14 and 15 year-olds, which may indeed be legal but seems pretty stupid to me. The rationale is either a) to stop them bringing their own (usually vodka and where are they getting hold of that?) or b) that by giving them small amounts to drink from an early age they will get used to it and learn how to drink sensibly. I doubt this one works, frankly; one child I know whose parents have been letting him have beers since twelve is now regularly smashed at 16.

Alcohol is not just a mood altering drug - it also affects brain growth, especially damaging at this age when the brain is still  developing and very plastic. There was a study recently showing that even in your early twenties, a couple of drinks cause brain cells to start dying; the brain is not really fully grown until 25.

I certainly drank underage when I was growing up, but mostly beer and cider not spirits. We didn't know nearly so much about the brain then anyway. We probably can't stop our children drinking until they're properly grown, but we can talk to them about it and we certainly don't have to supply it to them.

Well, there is always Nicholas, next door, or Budgens. I haven't used Waitrose yet, and now you have given me another reason not to...
I've never been asked for ID to prove I'm over 25 (stifled sob)

Or you can always buy your well sourced interesting wine from Viavino (ie me) :-)


This comment was posted with the agreement of Harringay Online in accordance with our policy on promoting commercial interests.

Better yet. Stay at home with all your under age kids and all the neighbourhood's kids and buy them each a case of whisky  on line. Or does the delivery man check that there are no children living at the address?

The policy is ridiculous!



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