Licensing Act 2003
The new licensing legislation came into force on 24
What does the new act do?
The Licensing Act has modernised licensing legislation and
provides greater freedom for the leisure and hospitality industry
and their users.
This freedom has been balanced by giving more responsibility to
the industry and providing tougher powers for police, Courts and
The new law is designed to meet the Government's four licensing
- The Prevention of Crime and Disorder
- Public Safety
- The Prevention of Public Nuisance
- The Protection of Children from Harm
All decisions about licences will be based on these four
What does the Act Mean For You?
The changes affect everyone. There are no longer
any fixed permitted operating hours. Instead of a fixed
closing time, bars, clubs and other premises are now allowed to
open during the hours they choose, subject to certain conditions
and requirements being complied with. Rules about the selling
of alcohol to under 18's are being tightened up and
simplified, and children's access to licensed premises has
Who Needs a Licence?
Anyone who wants to carry out a licensable activity, that is
- Sell or supply alcohol; or
- Providing entertainment or entertainment facilities; or
- Provide hot food or drink after 11.00pm
To do any of these activities you will need a premises
licence. If one of these activities is the sale or supply of
alcohol, then you also need at least one personal licence holder
except in the case of qualifying clubs. (See below for
Who Is Affected?
The Act has replaced six existing licensing regimes (alcohol,
public entertainment, cinemas, theatres, late night refreshment
houses and night cafes) and introduces late night takeaways into
licensing for the first time.
The new laws affect anyone concerned with:
- Pubs and night clubs
- Indoor sporting events
- Off licences
- Restaurants that serve alcohol
- Businesses offering hot foods or drinks between 11.00pm and
5.00am (for example takeaways and local shops selling hot
- Hotels and guest houses and other places that serve
- Private members' clubs and social clubs
- Theatres and amateur dramatic groups
- Organisers of occasional entertainment
All the above licences are now dealt with by the Council.
Premises Licences And Club Premises Certificates
You will need one of these if you wish to carry out licensable
activities at any particular premises. If you are applying for
a premises licence or club premises certificate, you will need
- contact the Council responsible for the area where the building
- submit a plan of your building
- show how you will be operating the premises.
Every premises that sells or supplies alcohol (except for
qualifying clubs) must have a Designated Premises Supervisor to
carry out that activity. This is the person who is responsible
for the day-to-day running of the premises. This person must
have a personal licence authorising the sale of alcohol and must be
named on the Premises Licence.
Your completed application should be submitted to the
Council's Licensing Group along with the relevant fee and required
documentation as specified in the guidance notes on the
You will also be required to complete an operating schedule
describing the measures that you intend to implment to promote
the four licensing objectives. Copies of the application
for a licence must also be sent to the responsible authorities
(statutory consultees). A
list of responsible authorities is available here
Also, applications need to be advertised in accordance
with a prescribed procedure.
Representations regarding applications for Premises
Responsible Authorities and interested parties (e.g. local
residents) are able to make relevant representations in respect of
an application or for variation of a premises
notes for interested parties
regarding relevant representations
are available here.
You will need one of these if you want to sell alcohol at
your premises. However, a personal licence is not required
where alcohol is supplied to members at a registered club. If
you are applying for a new personal licence you will need to
contact the Council where you live. The licence will be valid
for ten years and to get one, you will need to have a qualification
and pass a criminal records bureau check.
You can access all the relevant application forms for premises and personal licences
here. Alternatively, the forms are available from the
Council's Licensing Group.
Temporary Event Notice
This is not actually a licence. It involves notifying
the Council and the Police in advance if you want to hold a one-off
event at unlicensed premises, or at licensed premises if the event
is not covered by the Premises Licence/Club Premises
Certificate. You will have to fulfil certain conditions, and
there are a maximum number of events that you can stage at any
Guidance document available here
Fees for premises licences, club premises certificates,
personal licences and temporary event notices have been set by the
Government, the local council has no control over the setting of
A full schedule of fees is available here
What is South Lakeland's Licensing Policy?
The Council has drawn up a Statement
of Licensing Policy
setting out the basis on which decisions
under the Act will be made. The policy strives to achieve a
local balance between the commercial interests of the licensed
trade and the communities they serve and affect - a balance between
freedom and responsibility.
Where Can I Find Out More?
The Department of Culture, Media and Sport has issued Guidance
under Section 182 of the Licensing Act 2003. You can also
read the full
You may also find it useful to check out our
Frequently Asked Questions.
A full list of guidance documents
rules and procedures that should be followed when applying for the
various types of licences is available here.
- The Live Music Act 2012 has received the Royal Assent. Our
brief summary provides more
details of the proposed changes
- Amended application forms for various procedures under the
Licensing Act 2003 are now available on the Home
The Public Registers are currently unavailable, but
will be available again very soon. Please accept our apologies for
any inconvenience caused.
Phone: 0845 050 4434
(Fax: 01539 740300)
Post: Public Health & Licensing Group,
Neighbourhood Services Directorate, South Lakeland House,
Lowther Street, Kendal LA9 4UD