Select Committee on Deregulation and Regulatory Reform First Report

Appendix 13

Letter to the Clerk of the Deregulation and Regulatory Reform Committee from the Chief Executive of the Federation of Licensed Victuallers Associations (dated 10 September 2001)

Proposal for the Regulatory Reform (Special Occasions Licensing) Order 2001

Thank you for your letter of 19 July 2001.

Whilst we accept that due to Parliamentary procedures it would be difficult to bring in an Order before the beginning of December 2001 we are still of the opinion it is important this New Year's Eve 11 pm until 11 am New Year's Day extension is passed.

Why do we make this claim? The Federation of Licensed Victuallers Associations looks after the interests of self employed licensees, mainly the smaller establishments in the licensed trade. These are the ones who have to deal with problems caused by Magistrates granting extensions which vary widely from area to area. This leads to licensees being unable to offer their customers the same extensions as public houses in neighbouring areas.

Where licensees have already made their applications Magistrates have once again caused confusion by granting varied hours. If the Special Occasions Licensing Order 2001 is granted licensees will still have time to amend any plans for the occasion.

The FLVA, since its formation in 1992, has lobbied governments to ensure we had a uniformed policy for opening hours on New Year's Eve. Alas last year, once again, there was confusion in the licensed trade and in the public's mind because the proposal to extend the hours did not materialise and Magistrates could not agree on a national policy.

We would be pleased to give oral evidence on the Order to the Committee if required.

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