Old and new systems compared

 

Old

New

Magistrates have responsibility for alcohol licensing (Liquor licences and Restaurant licences

Local authorities have responsibility for entertainment licences and night café licences

Local authorities responsible for all alcohol and entertainments licensing (liquor, restaurant, entertainment and night café licences). Approx. 3,600 existing licences in Westminster.

Separate licences for cinema, theatre, sale of alcohol, public entertainment, etc.

One premises licence to cover all activities and no additional licence costs for more than one activity.

Individuals licensed to sell alcohol from particular premises.

Separate premises and portable personal licence.

Applicants for licences have to prove themselves fit and proper.

New applicants for personal licences need to gain an accredited qualification and obtain a criminal conviction certificate or a criminal record certificate or the results of a subject access search of the police national computer by the National Intelligence Service (or words to that effect).

Public entertainment fees set by individual local authorities.

Fees set by Government for premises and personal licences.

Two in a bar rule means that where more than two artists perform, a public entertainment licence is required.

All public entertainment will normally require a licence, but entertainment consisting of the performance of live music will not need a licence where it is incidental to other activities.

All public entertainment will normally require a licence, but entertainment consisting of the performance of live music will not need a licence where it is incidental to other activities.

Children’s access will be the norm, except where there is a good reason for them being excluded – balanced by clear objective of protection of children from harm.

The law concerning consumption of alcohol by under 18s in public places is confusing and unrealistic for example it is legal to buy an alcoholic drink and give it to a six year old in a public garden.

16 and 17 year olds will only be able to consume alcohol in pubs when it is bought for them by someone 18 years old or older, and is consumed with a meal in the company of someone 18 or over.

Licences are required for tombolas and raffles where alcohol is offered as a prize.

Tombolas or raffles will be exempted from the requirements for a licence is most cases

Anyone wishing to hold a one-off event must apply for an occasional permission from the Court.

A new system of temporary permitted activities will allow extensions for premises licences, (for example a big sporting event or a wedding) and the sale of alcohol by non-licence holders within permitted limits after a simple notification

Anyone can sell alcohol in wholesale quantities to the public without a licence

The exception for wholesale will only apply to sales between businesses or to personal or premises licence holders.

There is broad discretion for licensing authorities on the reasons for making licensing decisions.

There will be four specific licensing objectives on which all decisions in relation to licensing applications must be based.

Alcohol can only be served within specific limited permitted hours, subject to some extensions being obtained.

Permitted hours will be abolished and each licensed premises will choose its own hours of opening, subject to there being no objections from others.

Police powers to close relate only to permanent on-licensed premises

Police powers to close premises extended to all temporary events such as one-off raves.

Licensing Act - 2003