Quaysyde Restaurant - St Francis Bay CanalsThere is nothing quite like sitting on the banks of the canals with a cold beer or glass of wine on an early autumn evening even though it seems winter has come a little earlier this year. Something about watching water calms the soul and the passing paddlers and occasional boat chugging by makes the view all the more interesting. Those with homes get to enjoy this regularly and even those with family or friends who live on the canals, get to experience the enjoyment occasionally.

But what of those who live in the village, Air Park, Santareme or Cape St Francis who don’t have family or friends to visit. Until recently they could only enjoy the experience by dining at Big Time Taverna or Caffe Bijoux.  The opening of Quaysyde Restaurant on Sea Glades Drive changed all that and at last there is an eatery right on the water where patrons can dine , or simply take in the ambience of the canals, enjoying their sundowner close to the water. Only one problem with that though, Quaysyde is still fighting to get a liquor license. Some will argue this is a benefit as their drinks are cheaper this way but ‘schlepping’ a cooler box around with you really is not the way to go unless you are taking in the sunset at Sunset Rock.

So why doesn’t Quaysyde get a license? Well it seems there are a few selfish property owners on the canals are fighting tooth and nail, no expense spared, to prevent this happening. It is likely that these property owners don’t actually live on the canals but rather visit their homes for just a few weeks a year and then probably at the height of the summer season. If their objections are because they feel Quaysyde will create a noise hazard with noisy revellers partying until late into the night surely the noisy boats, often filled with youngsters playing loud music, screaming and singing and almost a daily occurrence over the season should also then be banned so these owners can have peace and solitude.

If noise is their major concern maybe they should rethink their objection. Quaysyde is a pretty upmarket facility and one would think a little out of the price range of those who habituate pubs to see how many shooters they can down in as short a time as possible. Then they should consider that a liquor license allows the facility to control distribution of liquor. If patrons start to get drunk and unruly they can be refused service and would soon leave the premises. Without a license diners can bring their own liquor and if they get unruly can be asked to leave but if they still have half a bottle of ‘Klippies’ or a carry pack of beers to consume, it would take a very brave waitron to force them to out without more than a little unpleasantness.

Quite honestly whatever the objections to granting a liquor license to Quaysyde, it simply doesn’t make sense. One can be pretty sure that the owners of Quaysyde want to retain it as an upmarket facility so that they can charge top dollar for a unique dining experience. A facility that is right on the water has been needed for a long time and really has many benefits. Visitors to St Francis dining at Quaysyde will experience how great these canals are and who knows, may make a decision to buy a house on the canals because of the experience. The facility will also create much needed employment for a few and those who don’t live on the canals will be able to enjoy what some take for granted.

So to those selfish few who believe they can deprive both locals and visitors of a great canal experience maybe they should go and rethink their objections. Rather than fight the granting of a liquor license they should funnel the money they spending in the courts into the “Saving St Francis” fund where their money can do some good