Club premises licence - new certificate

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All clubs supplying alcohol and entertainment need a club premises certificate. In a qualifying club there is technically no sale by retail of alcohol (except to guests). You will also need to fill out a New club premises licence declaration form

Volunteer and social clubs give rise to different issues for licensing law (the Licensing Act 2003) than commercially-run premises selling direct to the public.

Clubs such as working men's clubs and sports clubs are generally organisations where members join together for a particular social, sporting or political purpose and then combine to purchase alcohol in bulk for members.

Clubs tend to have premises to which public access is restricted and alcohol is supplied other than for profit. For these reasons, the 2003 Act affords clubs special treatment outside the normal premises licence arrangements.

The 'club premises certificate' is issued by Brent Council for clubs that meet the specific criteria set out in the 2003 Act for 'qualifying clubs' - giving the authority under which they may supply alcohol and conduct other 'qualifying club activities'.

In a qualifying club there is technically no sale by retail of alcohol (except to guests) as the members own part of the alcohol stock.

Qualifying criteria

General conditions for qualifying clubs:

  • a person may not be given memberships or as a candidate for membership to any membership privileges without an interval of at least two days from their membership application or nomination and their membership being granted;
  • that club rules state that those becoming member without nomination or application cannot have membership privileges for at least two days between them becoming members and being admitted to the club;
  • that the club is established and conducted in good faith;
  • that the club has at least 25 members;
  • that alcohol is only supplied to members on the premises on behalf of or by the club.

Additional conditions relating to the supply of alcohol:

  • that alcohol purchased for and supplied by the club is only to members of club who are over 18 years of age and are elected to do so by the members;
  • that no person at the expense of the club receives any commission, percentage or other similar payment in regard to the purchase of alcohol by the club;
  • that there are no arrangements for anyone to receive a financial benefit from supplying alcohol, apart from any benefit to the club or to any person indirectly from the supply giving a gain from running the club;

Registered industrial and provident societies and friendly societies will qualify if the alcohol is purchased for and supplied by the club is done under the control of the members or a committee of members.

Regulated entertainment

Regulated entertainment is entertainment provided with an audience, for the purpose of entertainment. For example:

  • The performance of a play;
  • The exhibition of a film;
  • An indoor sporting event;
  • Boxing or wrestling;
  • A performance of live music;
  • Any playing of recorded music;
  • Performance of dance;
  • Entertainment of a similar description (such as a karaoke).

It also includes the provision of entertainment facilities, that is facilities used for:

  • Making music (for example a piano);
  • Dancing (for example a dance floor);
  • Entertainment of a similar description (karaoke machine).

Filling in the application form

Applications for a club premises licence should be submitted with a plan of the premises which must be in a specific format, a copy of the rules of the club, a club operating schedule and the required fee.

Help with the operating schedule section

Before you start an application, read the guidance notes at the bottom. You need to have planned your answers to the section about your club operating schedule, in particular. This will ask you to provide information on:

  • the activities of the club;
  • the times the activities are to take place;
  • other opening times;
  • if alcohol supplies are for consumption on or off the premises or both;
  • the steps that the club propose to take to promote the four licensing objectives (the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm);
  • any other information that is required.

[Quick guide : In your explanation about licensing objective 4 - the protection of children - you should give information about anything intended to occur at the premises or ancillary to the use of the premises which may give rise to concern in respect of children, regardless of whether you intend children to have access to the premises, for example (but not exclusively) nudity or semi-nudity, films for restricted age groups, gambling machines etc ]

The application process

If a certificate is in place and the registered address of the club changes the club must give notice to the local licensing authority of the change and provide the certificate with the notice.

A club may apply to a local licensing authority to vary a certificate. The certificate should accompany the application.

The local licensing authority may inspect the premises before an application is considered.

If representations are made against an application which cannot be resolved through mediation, then the application will be heard by the council's licensing committee. The hearing must be carried out within 20 working days from the end of the consultation period.

The committee will consider the application before them and the representations and evidence it hears. The committee can decide to grant the certificate as applied for, modify the conditions applied for, exclude a qualifying club activity from the certificate, reject the application, suspend the certificate for a period not exceeding three months or withdraw the certificate.

What happens if your application is not processed by the local authority within the timescales stated

Tacit consent applies
This means that you will be able to act as though your application is granted if you have not heard from the local authority by the end of the target completion period. Club registration certificate applications will be processed on receipt of all valid documentation and fees. If you receive no further contact from us within the stated timescale in the application acknowledgement then tacit authorisation applies. Where matters arise with regards to the application giving need for an extension of the processing period the applicant / agent will be notified.

Target completion period

We will process your application as quickly as possible and, in any event, within the following timescales:

Application

Processing Times

Tacit Consent

Application for a new club premises certificate

60 calendar days

YES

Application for a variation to a club premises certificate

60 calendar days

YES

Application for a minor variation to a premises or club licence

The Local Authority must wait until a ten working day period has elapsed before determining the application, but must do so at the latest within fifteen working days, beginning on the first working day after the local authority received the application, with the effect either that:

  • the minor variation is granted; or
  • the application is refused.

NO

Note

Tacit consent will not apply for a 'minor variation'. This means that there are certain time limits set down in the legislation for a 'minor variation' that enable the local authority to test whether a proposed variation could impact adversely on any of the four licensing objectives, namely, the prevention of crime and disorder; public safety; the prevention of public nuisance; and the protection of children from harm.

Fees and charges

Means of redress

Failed application redress

If an application is refused, the applicant may appeal the decision.

Appeals must be made to the local Magistrates' court within 21 days of the decision.

Licence holder redress

A licence holder can appeal against a decision to refuse a variation application or put conditions on a certificate or to exclude any club activity. Appeals may also be made against the variation of any condition.
Appeals against the decision of a review can be made.
A club may appeal against the withdrawing of a certificate.
Appeals must be made to the local Magistrates' court within 21 days of the decision appealed.

Club member

A club member may request a review of the certificate. The local licensing authority will give reasons for their response to the application in a notice.
Appeals against the decision of a review can be made.
Appeals must be made to the local Magistrates' court within 21 days of the decision appealed.

Other redress

Any interested party may make representations to an application for a Club registration or variation. If representations are made a hearing will be held to consider the application and the representations. Notices will be made by the local licensing authority detailing the reasons for any outcome.

An interested party is:

  • a person living near the premises or a body representing such a person
  • a person involved in a business near the premises or a body representing such a person

An interested party may request a review of the club premises certificate. The local licensing authority will give reasons for their response to the application in a notice.
An interested party may appeal if they argue that a certificate should not have been granted or that different or additional conditions or limitations on activities should have been made. They may also appeal against any variation of a condition.
Appeals against the decision of a review can be made.
Appeals must be made to the local Magistrates' court within 21 days of the decision appealed.

Consumer complaint

We would always advise that in the event of a complaint, you make the first contact with the trader - preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked and you are located in the UK, Citizens Advice consumer service will give you advice. From outside the UK, contact the UK European Consumer Centre .

Should you need to complain about, for example, noise, pollution, etc. or should one licence holder have cause to complain about another - please contact the council's contact centre in the first instance.