AN AYR businessman has won a heated battled to sell booze in a village.

The owner of a neighbouring rival store in Symington and residents tried to stop Muhammad Malik's plans to move into the small marketplace.

They said the new shop's arrival would spark anti-social behaviour and be an 'over provision' of places to buy alcohol at last week's South Ayrshire Council licensing board meeting.

Resident Margaret McLaughlin said: "I came here to get away from crime and I feel if this licence is awarded, crime will increase.

"We already have a shop that sells alcohol but it is a small section of that shop."

Objector Abdul Nasim owns the existing store in Brewlands Drive, which is in the same street as the newly planned premises.

His lawyers claim the application from Mr Malik would be an overprovision of licensed premises and called into question its size.

Solicitor Brian Dunlop said: "Mr Malik and his family are already running premises in South Ayrshire and running them well."

He argued that compared to the likes of Troon and Prestwick, Symington was short of drink sellers.

Councillors approved Mr Malik's booze licence.

Councillor Allan Dorans said: "I don't think an additional premises would increase the level of disorder."