Below, you’ll find a brief outline of a specific section of the Licensing Act 2003. For the entire Act, please click the link on the right of this page.
The Licensing Act 2003, or the Act, became law on 24 November 2005 and introduced a single licence scheme for licensing premises that:
• Supply alcohol;
• Provide regulated entertainment; and/or
• Provide refreshments late at night
About the Act
The Act includes several key features, including information on:
• General Offences;
• Crime and Disorder;
• Appeals; and
Licensing authorities operate within the parameters set by four licensing objectives, all of which are designed to ensure that licensable activities are carried out in the public interest:
• The prevention of crime and disorder;
• Public safety;
• The prevention of public nuisance; and
• The protection of children from harm
Key Features Within the Act
The Act includes several key features important for premises, including:
• Flexible opening hours for premises;
• Consideration of how opening hours will impact local residents and businesses;
• Single premises licence scheme authorising premises for multiple licensing activities;
• Personal licences, specifically as related to issuance by licensing authorities after notification and scrutiny by the police and other relevant authorities;
• Local residents and businesses retain the right to make representations regarding applications; and
• Personal Licences, specifically those issued by Licensing Authorities after scrutiny by the police in instances where an applicant has been convicted of certain offences.
There are six distinct areas contained within Part 7 of the Act that define many of the general offences within the legislation, including:
• Unauthorised licensable activities;
• Drukenness and disorderly conduct that occurs on licensed premises;
• Smuggled goods;
• Children and alcohol;
• Vehicles and trains; and
• False statements
Crime and Disorder
The Act also serves an important role in preventing crime and disorder as well as public nuisance while empowering individuals to have more freedom and choice in their leisure.
Applicants are allowed to appeal decisions made by the Licensing Authority and allow those who have made a relevant representation to an application to appeal against the decision.
For example, a landlord would be able to appeal against conditions attached to a licence and a local resident or interested party who has completed a relevant representation would be able to appeal a licence being granted.
Any interested parties, including local residents, can request a Premises Licence review should problems occur in relation to licensing objectives. Once the review is complete, the Licensing Authority can choose one of many actions, including suspending or revoking licences, excluding specific licensable activities or changing conditions attached to a specific licence.
Please note that these actions are only permitted when they are necessary to address and resolve a problem and then promote one or more of the four licensing objectives described above.