Club Premises Certificate


The Licensing Act 2003 regulates licensable activities.

Licensable activities are:

  • Sale by retail of alcohol;
  • Supply of alcohol by or on behalf of a club to, or to the order of, a member of the club;
  • The provision of regulated entertainment; and
  • The provision of late night refreshment (the sale of hot food or drink between 11.00 p.m and 5.00 a.m).

In order to provide one or more licensable activity you must have a premises licence, a club premises certificate or a temporary event notice.

The club premises certificate permits supply of alcohol to members of a club or sale of alcohol to guests or members and also permits regulated entertainment. The certificate will confirm the licensable activities permitted under the Licensing Act 2003, the times during which those activities may be provided and any additional restrictions that apply by way of conditions.

There is no requirement for a designated premises supervisor to be named on a club premises certificate, nor is there a need to have authorisation for provision of late night refreshment.

A club premises certificate can only be issued to a ‘qualifying’ club. In order to be a qualifying club the club must have at least 25 members and meet the qualifying conditions set out in the Licensing Act 2003. Instant membership of a qualifying club is not permitted and members must wait at least 2 days between their application and their admission to the club. Qualifying clubs must be conducted in good faith.

Qualifying clubs may choose to apply for a premises licence if it decides it wishes to offer its facilities commercially for use by the general public, for example, hiring out a function room for parties.

Alternatively, clubs may apply for temporary event notices to cover events where licensable activities are required which fall outside of their club premises certificate.

Application for club premises certificate

Applications for club premises certificates are submitted to the licensing authority in which the premises are located. Copies must be sent to a number of responsible bodies including the police, environmental health officer and fire department. The application must be advertised in the local press and on the premises for a statutory period of time.

There is a 28 day consultation period for a club premises certificate. If objections are received within that time the matter will go before a licensing sub-committee of the local authority to decide the matter having heard evidence from all parties.

Variation of a club premises certificate

Variation applications can be submitted in respect of a club premises certificate. There are two types of variation that can be made:

A full variation will have to be submitted if the proposed changes may negatively impact on the licensing objectives; &

A minor variation application may be made in limited circumstances.

The application process for a full variation application is similar to a new premises licence application and involves a 28 day consultation period and advertising in the press.

The minor variation is simplified and requires a 10 working day consultation period and no need to advertise in the press. However, if the licensing authority considers the minor variation may have an adverse impact on the licensing objectives they may refuse the application and there is no right of appeal against that decision. The application must then be resubmitted as a full variation application.

Transfer of a club premises certificate

It is possible to transfer a club premises certificate from one party to another. The club premises certificate can be held by a corporate body, an individual or a group of individuals. The holder of the club premises certificate must carry on or intend to carry on a business which uses the premises for licensable activities. If you wish to transfer an existing club premises certificate to you or your company an application for transfer must be submitted. The application is submitted to the licensing authority with a copy to the police. Consents of the outgoing licence holder must be provided although there are circumstances in which this is not required.

The rules of the club must be submitted with the application for a club premises certificate. Any changes to the rules must be notified to the licensing authority. As part of the application process for a club premises certificate a declaration must be completed by the club to show that the club is of qualifying club status and that the rules are compliant for such a club.

If we can assist you in any way, or if you simply want to discuss any licensing & gambling issue, please contact us at any time.