Licensing policy

Requests for a review of licenses

38.1 The Council recognises that at any time after a Premises Licence or Club Premises Certificate has been issued, a responsible authority, such as the Police or Fire Authority, a councillor, or any other person, may ask the Council to review the licence to premises because of problems arising in connection with any of the four Licensing objectives.

38.2 Responsible authorities will aim to give licensees early warning of any concerns identified at premises. The Council will accept requests for a review of a licence unless delegated officers deem them to be frivolous, vexatious or repetitious. In the case of requests which are deemed frivolous, vexatious or repetitious, the Council will notify the person making representations of the reason behind the Council’s decision and inform them that the Council intends to take no further action.

38.3 The Council will set up a scheme of delegation to allow the Head of Public Health and Protection to decide if a request for a review of a licence is valid. The authority’s role will be to administer the process and determine its outcome at a hearing where an evidential basis for the allegations made will need to be submitted.

38.4 In general, the Council will treat representations as repetitious if no more than 12 months have elapsed since an identical or substantially similar representations has been made, although in exceptional and compelling circumstances a shorter period may be deemed acceptable. The exclusion of a complaint on the grounds that it is repetitious does not apply to responsible authorities which may make more than one request for a review of a premises licence within a twelve month period. Other instances where a representation may be considered repetitious are at 11.2 of the section 182 guidance to the licensing act.

38.5 If a request for review is justified, the Council will advise the holder of the Premises Licence or Club Premises Certificate concerned that a request has been accepted and the Council will provide them with the details pertaining to the nature of the request, including any supporting evidence, in order that they may be fully aware of the allegations made. The Council will then arrange a meeting of the Licensing Sub Committee, who will review the Premises Licence or Club Premises Certificate.

38.6 Where premises are found to be trading irresponsibly, the licensing authority will not hesitate, where appropriate to do so, to take tough action to tackle the problems at the premises and, where other measures are deemed insufficient, to revoke the licence.

38.7 In cases when the crime prevention objective is being undermined through the premises being used to further crimes, it is expected that revocation of the licence, even in the first instance, will be seriously considered.

38.8 We would recommend that any one applying for a review to consider Chapter 11 of the section 182 guidance to the Licensing Act 2003.

38.9 Reviews following a closure order or an illegal working compliance order are subject to certain timescales as set out in the legislation. A closure order comes under section 80 of the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 and an illegal working compliance order comes under section 38 and Schedule 6 to the Immigration Act 2016.

38.10 Premises that do not operate a responsible policy or operate due diligence with regard to the sale of alcohol to children and persistent sales of alcohol have occurred, a review will normally take place and if appropriate the licence will be revoked. However the section 182 guidance at 11.29 which refers to a proportionate approach rather than being too specific will be observed.