Licensing policy


5.1 Licensing is about the regulation of licensed premises, qualifying members’ clubs and temporary events. We may only impose conditions on premises licences and club premises certificates in two circumstances: firstly where the applicant volunteers them as part of their operating schedule; and secondly on receipt of relevant representations from potentially affected members of the public or responsible authorities, which the licensing authority accepts as being relevant.

5.2 The Licensing Act 2003 (Mandatory Licensing Conditions) Order 2010 SI 2010/860 introduced new mandatory conditions as part of a revision to s.19A and 73 B of the Act in 2010. These do not have to be physically included in the licence or certificate but nonetheless will apply to every licence and certificate authorising the sale and supply of alcohol on the premises. The requirements for a DPS and for all sales to be made or authorised by a personal licence holder do however have to be physically included in the licence. Only condition 4 of SI 2010/860 will apply to premises licensed for the sale or supply of alcohol for consumption off the premises. The mandatory licence conditions do not apply to activities 9including the supply of alcohol) authorised by a temporary event notice.

5.3 Condition 1 of SI 2010/860 refers to ‘irresponsible promotions’ in relation to the retail sale of alcohol for consumption on the premises. Any irresponsible promotion is one that fits the descriptions in the guidance at 10.40-10.44 (or is substantially similar), is carried on for the purpose of encouraging the sale or supply of alcohol for consumption on the premises. The aim of the condition is to prohibit or restrict promotions which undermine the licensing objectives.

5.4 Conditions will only be attached to premises licences or club premises certificates where they are reasonable, proportionate, enforceable and relevant to the premises. They should focus on matters within the control of the individual licence holder or premises user (for temporary event notices). Conditions will be tailored to the type of operation and specific characteristics of the individual premises.

5.5 Where no representations have been received, we must grant the authorisation as set out in the operating schedule accompanying the application and those that are required by statute.

5.6 Any conditions should be:

  • clear
  • enforceable
  • evidenced
  • proportionate
  • relevant
  • be expressed in plain language capable of being understood by those expected to comply with them.

5.7 We expect all applicants for premises licences and club premises certificates to specify the means by which they will promote the four licensing objectives. The application must include an operating schedule addressing the licensing objectives, in particular with regard to the type of premises, the licensable activities to be provided, the operational procedures, the nature of the location and the needs of the local community. An applicant may volunteer any measure as a step he or she intends to take to promote the licensing objectives. The measures are likely to be incorporated into the licence as conditions and become enforceable under the law.

5.8 Conditions on operating schedules will be interpreted in accordance with the applicants intention and will not necessarily replicate the wording exactly.

5.9 Licensing law is not the primary mechanism for the general control of nuisance and anti-social behaviour by individuals once they are away from the licensed premises and therefore, beyond the direct control of the individual, club or business holding the licence, certificate or authorisation concerned. Therefore, conditions will not normally impose obligations on the licence holder where it is beyond the direct control of the individual, club or business holding the licence, certificate or authorisation concerned. Nonetheless, it is a key aspect of such control and licensing law will always be part of a holistic approach to the management of the evening and night time economy in town centres.

5.10 However licensees and certificate holders should maintain control of external areas for example beer gardens or smoking shelters. In appropriate circumstances the Council will look to other mechanisms, which are available for addressing any issues.

5.11 The Act requires that any conditions attached to licences must be specific to individual premises and tailored to the characteristics and style of the licensable activities rather than applying a set of standardised conditions to all. The Council will therefore always ensure that conditions are individually selected and appropriately tailored. In some cases conditions may be drawn from pools of conditions set out in the Guidance issued under section 182 of the Licensing Act 2003.

5.12 If you are a community premises such as a church or village hall you can now apply to remove the mandatory conditions in section 19(2) and (3) of the Licensing Act 2003. These conditions stated that you must have a designated premises supervisor (DPS) who is a personal licence holder to authorise every supply of alcohol. This can be removed and replaced with a requirement for a management committee responsible for the supply of alcohol. A management committee of a community, church or village hall can apply for the removal of the conditions from an existing licence, or apply for a licence that does not include these conditions. There are three types of application that can be made:

  • an application to replace the requirement to have a DPS with the alternative licence condition for an existing premises licence to supply alcohol.
  • a new application for a premises licence including the supply of alcohol under the alternative licence condition.
  • an application to vary an existing premises licence to add the supply of alcohol under the alternative licence condition

5.13 The DCMS Guidance and relevant forms can be found on the Council’s website: