Licensing Policy Documents

Licensing Act 2003

The Licensing Act 2003 came into force on 24 November 2005 and transferred the responsibility for licensing premises and persons selling alcohol from the courts to local authorities.

A requirement of this new legislation is that all local authorities (or Licensing Authorities as they are known under the Act) must draft, consult on and publish a "Statement of Licensing Policy". The Statement of Licensing Policy must have regard to the content of a set of Guidance notes published by the Secretary of State.

The Act requires each Authority to review its Statement of Licensing Policy whenever necessary and, in any case, every five years. At the end of 2015 the Licensing Authority completed the fourth review of its Statement of Licensing Policy, which has now been adopted and came into effect on 11 January 2016. It sets out how we plan to deal with applications made under the Act and balance people's desire for entertainment with residents' right to a peaceful nights sleep.

For more information see the Foreword to the Licensing Policy by Councillor Tim Ahern, JP, Cabinet Member for Environment, Environmental Health and Leisure and the current Statement of Licensing Policy below

The Licensing Act 2003 can be found on the National Archives Legislation website and the Secretary of State's Guidance can be found on the Home Office website.

In 2012 the Government has also published a National Alcohol Strategy which can be found on the Home Office website

Gambling Act 2005

The Gambling Act 2005 came into force on 1 September 2007 and replaced most of the existing law about gambling in Great Britain. The Act put in place an improved, more comprehensive structure of gambling regulation. It modernised 40-year-old gambling laws, ready to face the challenges of today and the future, while including a number of important protections.

It established The Gambling Commission, a new, independent national regulator for commercial gambling in Great Britain who are also the issuing Authority for licences for operators of gambling businesses

The Gambling Act requires all Licensing Authorities to prepare, consult on and publish a Statement of Gambling Policy every three years, setting out how the Authority will manage the licensing of local gambling premises. The Council completed the third review of its Statement of Gambling Policy at the end of 2015 and the latest version came into effect on 1 February 2016.

For more information please see the Foreword to the Gambling Policy by Councillor Tim Ahern, JP, Cabinet Member for Environment, Environmental Health and Leisure, and the current Statement of Gambling Policy below.

Gambling Policy 2016-2019 [PDF] (file size 1.18 MB)

Guidance issued to Local Authorities by the Gambling Commission can be found on the Gambling Commission website.

Enforcement Policy

The Licensing Team is part of the Environmental Health Service Group and is responsible for carrying out duties for various different licensing functions, including enforcement. When carrying out enforcement duties within the Borough licensing officers must have due regard to the Regulators’ Compliance Code, which places a number of obligations on local authorities when undertaking enforcement duties, among others, taking a consistent approach to enforcement and being proportionate in response to any licensing breaches. To achieve this the Council has adopted an enforcement policy which sets out the Environmental Health Service Group's general approach to enforcement.

Read the Environmental Health Service Group's Enforcement Policy