Frequently asked questions
New Premises Licence
Q: When can applications for new premises licences be submitted?
A: Applications for new premises licences can be made at any time, but they will not come into effect until the second appointed day. If that were not the case there would be a serious problem in terms of business continuity for operators who acquire a licence under the existing legislation but after the first appointed day. Applicants will not be able to convert such licences but will want to obtain a new premises licence to come into operation on the second appointed day.
Designated Premises Supervisor
Q: When an applicant for a premises licence also wishes to be the Designated Premises Supervisor, do they need to complete the form of consent in Schedule 2 of the application?
A: Schedule 2 will need to be completed. It is a requirement in Schedule 8 of the Act and there doesn't appear to be a provision which makes an exception where the prospective Designated Premises Supervisor is also the applicant.
Q: In what cases are vessels treated as 'premises' under the new legislation and therefore licensed by the Council. For example, a vessel is usually moored at Little Venice. Whilst moving along the canal system they are offering licensable activities on board (eg sale of alcohol; music). Do they have to apply for a licence (or conversion) from the Council where they are usually moored or with the British Waterways Board?
A: The British Waterways Board is not a licensing authority. If the vessel is usually moored at Little Venice it will be treated as if it were premises situated at Little Venic (Section 189 of the Licensing Act 2003). The application will have to be made to the appropriate authority.
Q: A premises has 50% of their rateable value waived as a charitable organisation. How should the applicant calculate the rateable value of the premises for conversion purposes?
A: Any rate of relief granted to a charitable organisation (called discretionary relief) or to a commercial operator (called hardship relief) will not alter the rateable value of a premises in any way. In other words, the rateable value is determined for a particular premises and rates payable are calculated by reference to the rateable value. The rates may be reduced if relief is granted, but the rateable value stays the same. In the example given, the applicant must still base the fee on the rateable value without any adjustment being made.
Q: What happens as far as 'provisional statements' are concerned (ie what we currently call provisional licences)? What is the associated fee?
A: The 2003 Act provides for a person, if an individual aged 18 or over, who has an interest in the premises to apply for a 'provisional statement'. 'Person' in this context includes a business. An application for a provisional statement may be made in circumstances where premises are being or are about to be constructed for the purpose of being used for one or more licensable activities, or are being or about to be extended or otherwise altered for that purpose. The application must be advertised and notified to responsible authorities and interested parties in accordance with the requirements of the regulations. The fee for an application for a provisional statement is set out in Schedule 6 of the Licensing Act (Fees) Regulations 2005 (as amended). The fee is £315.
Q: What local newspapers would Westminster City Council consider suitable for the public consultation advertisement under the 2003 Act?
A: Public consultation advertisements should be placed in a local newspaper that circulates particularly in the vicinity of the applicant premises. The newspaper is for the applicant to decide. However a few example are listed below, although others may also be suitable:
- West End Extra (West End)
- The Wood and Vale (North & City)
- The Marylebone Express
- The Marylebone Mercury
- The Pimlico & Westminster Times
Q: What type of condition under the Licensing Act 2003 is the existing restriction relating to no credit sales in alcohol licensed premises?
A: This is an embedded restriction, ie it is a restriction placed on all licences for the sale or supply of alcohol which is 'embedded' within legislation - in this case, the Licensing Act 1964. The Licensing Act 2003 repeals this legislation and therefore the restriction must be included on the converted licence.
Please contact the Licensing Service should you have any questions.
Westminster City Council does not accept any legal liability for the contents of this information.
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