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).
Application for premises licence
The premises licence 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.
Applications for premises licences are submitted to the licensing authority in which the premises is 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 premises licence application. If objections are received in that time, the matter will go before a licensing sub-committee of the local authority which will decide the matter having heard evidence from all parties.
Variation of a premises licence
Variation applications can be submitted in respect of a premises licence. 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.
The premises licence may also be varied to name a different designated premises supervisor. The DPS variation application must be submitted to the licensing authority with a copy forwarded to the Police. Consent of the incoming designated premises supervisor must be provided. It is always advisable that the DPS is the person who is in effective day to day control of the premises when trading.
The DPS must hold a personal licence.
Transfer of a premises licence
It is possible to transfer a premises licence from one party to another. The premises licence can be held by a corporate body, an individual or a group of individuals. The holder of the premises licence must carry on or intend to carry on a business which uses the premises for licensable activities. If you wish to transfer an existing premises licence 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.
Lapse or surrender of a premises licence
If a premises licence holder dies or becomes mentally incapacitated or insolvent the licence will lapse. A premises licence holder may surrender his licence by giving written notice to the licensing authority to that effect and by providing the original premises licence to the authority.
Where a licence has lapsed or been surrendered the licence may be reinstated within 28 days of the lapse/surrender if a valid transfer application is submitted within that period.
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.