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Chiltern District Council
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Alcohol and Entertainment

The  Licensing Act 2003  provides a system for the granting of Personal Licences to individuals to supply, or to authorise the supply of alcohol. The 'new' Personal Licence is separate from the Licence which authorises the premises to be used for the supply of alcohol, the new Premises Licence.

There are four activities that attract the need for a Licence:

  • the sale of alcohol
  • supply of alcohol (clubs)
  • the provision of regulated entertainment, such as music and dancing and;
  • the sale of hot food after 11.00pm but before 5.00am.  All of these will require a Premises Licence.

A Personal Licence is required only where alcohol is sold. Not everyone selling alcohol needs a Personal Licence but it is likely that someone involved in the business or operation will.

Temporary Event Notices apply in the case of occasional events involving less than 500 people. In such cases, a Licence would not be required but the organiser would have to serve notice on the District Council and there will be certain limitations on the duration and number of event.

The Basic System

The new system replaces all existing licences and permissions relating to the following:

  1. The sale of alcohol
  2. The supply of alcohol
  3. The provision of regulated entertainment which includes music and dancing
  4. The supply of late-night refreshment

All of these activities are covered by the same Licence and the Licence can be tailored to the specific nature of the premises in question by means of operating conditions. In effect the same Licence can permit the sale of alcohol and the provision of music and dancing, for example. The new Licence is known as a Premises Licence.

The Premises Licence  does not require renewal. It lasts as long as the premises continue to operate, unless it is surrendered or revoked. However, as well as an initial application fee, the Licensing Authority requires an annual fee. There are also fees for various associated applications to Licences, such as variations and transfers. All fees are set by Central Government. (see section on Fees)

Similar to a Premises Licence but with some important differences is a Club Premise Certificates. This essentially permits the supply of alcohol and provision of music and dancing in 'qualifying clubs.' A qualifying club is described in the Act but essentially is where 2 days elapses before privileges of membership become available, the club has at least 25 members and alcohol is only supplied to members on the premises for the benefit of the club.

Licensing Objectives

Underpinning the Licensing Act are four objectives and all of those concerned with the licensing process must promote these. The objectives are:

  1. The prevention of crime and disorder
  2. The promotion of public safety
  3. The prevention of public nuisance
  4. The protection of children from harm

All applications have to describe exactly how the applicant intends to promote each of these objectives. Similarly any representations made have to limit themselves to one or more of the objectives. Representations outside the scope of any of these will be irrelevant.