Sarah Smith

Business, Leisure Services, Licensing and Gambling, Regulatory Services

Title: Partner

Tel: 0191 226 4897

Email Sarah Smith

Sarah is a Partner and Head of the Licensing and Gambling team at Sintons.


  • Advising on all aspects of the laws relating to supply of alcohol, provision of entertainment, late night refreshment, sex establishments, gambling activity, civil marriage approvals, pavement licences and associated planning applications
  • Preparing and presenting evidence in respect of applications, reviews and appeal hearings
  • Working with Local Authority Officers and Responsible Bodies to achieve quick, cost effective results
  • Dealing with and resolving enforcement and regulatory issues
  • Presenting seminars and training to clients and trade groups
  • Working with the leisure services, regulatory and planning teams in order to provide clients with the full service support they require in their businesses


Client/professional quotes:

Legal 500

Sarah has been listed as a ‘leading individual‘ by the Legal 500 since 2016 and her team was praised its ability to act for major regional and nationally-known operators. Sarah is renowned for her ability to genuinely support a client and achieve results.

The 2021 Guide ranked Sarah in the Hall of Fame and stated ‘Sarah Smith stands out as an experienced partner with a good working relationship with Local Authority Licensing officers.‘

In the 2018 Guide Sarah was praised for her “deep experience in handling an array of major new projects.”

“Top rated” (Legal 500 2016)

Chambers & Partners

She was ranked highly and recognised as being a notable practitioner in the Chambers UK 2017,  2018, 2019, 2020 & 2021 Guides, being described in the 2017 Guide as “utterly committed to the client’s cause, extremely well prepared and universally liked by committees,” according to commentators. Clients appreciate that she has a “very good success rate and experience of the licensing trade.”

In the 2018 Guide Sarah was described as “often seeing problems before they actually arise, which is extremely helpful,” reports one appreciative source, while another comments: “She’s very knowledgeable, and we always feel that as a client we are Sarah’s number-one priority, regardless of how many clients she is dealing with.”

In the 2019 Guide Sarah was described as being “the kind of person you want fighting your corner,” adding: “She is highly knowledgeable, fights for her client and takes no prisoners in the process.” The Guide also described the Licensing team as “having a broad spectrum of expertise in licensing,” adding: “they are approachable, knowledgeable and not afraid to go into battle for their client.” Sources praised the team’s “timely responses, attention to detail and willingness to please.”

The Chambers 2020 UK Guide describes Sarah as having “an excellent reputation in the North East market.” and an “ability to explain complex issues in layman’s terms.

The Chambers 2021 UK Guide said “Sarah is a pleasure to work with. She is easy to contact, very intelligent and knowledgeable in the field of licensing.” “She is very familiar with the law and the local policies and she always provides good and knowledgeable advice. She goes above and beyond.” “She has been excellent. She is very meticulous and detailed, but also explains things in layman’s terms.”

Key Practice Areas

  • Licensing and Gambling
  • Leisure Services
  • Regulatory Services
  • Planning
  • Alcohol
  • Entertainment
  • Taxi Licensing