Mr Collins has lost his appeal to the local magistrates court about the conditions applied to his annual street trading licence on its renewal. This required that Mr Collins should, if selling by weight, sell in metric quantities and use a scale calibrated in metric quantities. In effect, this requires him to comply with current legislation.
Mr Collins can continue trading though if Mr Collins contravenes the terms of the licence the council will consider what action, if any, it should take.
Sutton council is not preventing anyone asking for goods in pounds and ounces. Anyone can order a pound of carrots, 12 ounces of fruit, or whatever.
Sutton?s Head of Health & Trading Standards, Tony Northcott said;
'As a local authority, we have a legal obligation to enforce various pieces of legislation relating to trading standards, including that on metrication; but we have no wish to see any traders lose their licence unnecessarily.
'Council staff worked with our local traders to help them comply with metrication laws for many months before they came into effect. We have helped them carry on trading without incurring large costs or making unacceptable changes to their normal methods of trading.
'In order to keep within the law a trader has to be able to sell fruit and vegetables to their customers by metric weight. But, for example, prices can still quite legally be displayed as a price per pound provided that the price per metric unit of weight is also displayed with equal or greater prominence. Where items are sold by number, not weight, then no metric measurement is required.'
Almost without exception market traders and shopkeepers across the borough have adapted to the new requirements. Sutton Council has not prosecuted a single trader for failing to comply with legislation on metrication.'