Under the Licensing Act 2003 pubs, clubs, off licences and a range of other premises will need to be licensed by their local council, not by the Magistrates’ Court as before. In addition, a personal, ‘portable’ licence will also be needed by anyone wanting to sell alcohol. Any application which does not comply with the regulations will be rejected.
Licences under the new regime will take effect on 24 November 2005. Businesses without a correct licence as of that date may not be able to carry on trading.
A telephone information line has now been set up by the Local Government Association and the Local Authorities Co-ordinators of Regulatory Services, funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, to help traders understand the new licensing laws. The information line number is 0207 072 7447. Licensees can also e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org