A school fundraiser faces a battle with bureaucracy to continue to sell alcohol after a medical officer objected to the event which has been running for 10 years.

The Napier District Licensing Committee will tomorrow hear an objection to plans to sell liquor at a suburban Hawke's Bay school fundraising event.

The objection has been lodged by the Hawke's Bay District Health Board against an application by Port Ahuriri School to sell liquor over the three-and-a-half hours of its Food and Music Festival in the school grounds on the evening of Friday, November 9.

It will be the fourth year in a row the selling of liquor at the event has been opposed by the board through Medical Officer of Health Dr Rachel Eyre, who argued the consumption of alcohol on school grounds in the presence of children was inappropriate.


The application was not opposed by the police and no concerns have been raised by Napier City Council licensing inspector Darryn Waugh.

Eyre said her view held it was inappropriate to have liquor on school grounds consumed in the presence of minors and this view was shared by Medical Officers of Health throughout the country.

In June this year, the DHB released a report "Alcohol and Schools don't mix: Young people and underage exposure", distributed with a fact sheet to all schools in the region.

Eyre said key points included a "growing body of evidence" that children who witness parents and other adults consuming alcohol were more likely to start drinking at an "earlier" age and to drink "more hazardously".

The festival has been held annually for more than 10 years and had, until recent years, been known as a wine and food festival.

District Licensing Committees throughout the country run according to legislation and local policy, and its decisions can be appealed to the Alcohol Regulatory Licensing Authority.