Review of a Premises Licence

An “interested party” may apply for a review of a licence or certificate that is in force. A licensing authority may reject the application for review if it is satisfied that the grounds for review are not relevant to one or more of the licensing objectives:

  • The prevention of crime and disorder;
  • Public safety;
  • The prevention of public nuisance; and
  • The protection of children from harm

Things you may want to consider when seeking a review:

  • It may be helpful to get the backing of other people living, or businesses operating in the vicinity of the premises, or other “responsible authorities”.
  • Look at the Council’s official records about the premises, kept in their ‘licensing register’. This will show you if other people have made representations, or asked for a review of a premises in the past
  • If you are thinking of raising a petition, it is important to ensure that the licensing authority can determine whether all the signatories are within the ‘vicinity’ of the premises. So, including their addresses and indicating clearly what grounds they are all asking for a review would be helpful. It would also help if a spokesperson could volunteer to receive details about the hearings etc. from the Council and may be willing to speak on behalf of the petitioners at the hearing.
  • If you want to ask another person such as an MP or local Councillor to represent you at the review, it is advisable to make such a request in writing so that the individual can demonstrate he or she was asked. It will be a matter for the MP or Councillor to decide whether they should agree to your request. They are not obliged to do so, however, most elected representatives are happy to help residents with this sort of issue, and there is no requirement for them to live in the vicinity of the premises in question for them to be able to make representations on behalf of residents that do. It should be noted that Councillors who are part of the licensing committee hearing the application will not be able to discuss the application with you outside the formal hearing, so it is suggested that you do not approach them to try to.
  • For individual incidents, try to get as much information as possible about any official response (e.g. – police being called out)
  • You may also be able to back up your application with data such as crime statistics. However, it should be noted that conditions attached to licences cannot seek to manage the behaviour of customers once they are beyond the direct management of the licence holder and his staff or agents, but can directly impact on the behaviour of those under the licensee’s direction when on his premises or in the immediate vicinity of the premises as they seek to enter or leave.
  • If there is general noise nuisance on streets because of licensed premises, you will probably need to show how it relates to the specific premises.
  • It is important to be able to back up your claims. You could do this by keeping a diary over a period of time, for example. Sound or video recordings may also be helpful. It may also be a while before any hearing, so it is good to keep a clear record.
  • Residents or businesses applying for a review following a particular incident should be cautious, as a licensee may argue that this was a one off problem that can be rectified without a review.
  • Have a good idea how you’d like the situation to be resolved.