House of Commons - Explanatory Note
Licensing Bill [HL] - continued          House of Commons

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Clause 70 - Other definitions relating to clubs

137.     This clause defines 'secretary' for the purposes of this Part of the Bill as any person performing the duties of a secretary.

Clause 71 - Application for club premises certificate

138.     Subsections (1) to (4) provide that applications for a club premises certificate for premises which are occupied by and used for the purposes of a club may be made by a qualifying club to the relevant licensing authority (see clause 68). Applications are to be made in the form prescribed in regulations made by the Secretary of State and accompanied by a fee similarly prescribed.

139.     Subsection (5) provides that the operating schedule will set out various details relating to the operation of particular club premises. Those details include the qualifying club activities to be carried out, the proposed hours of those activities and other times when it is proposed that the premises will be open to members and their guests, and a statement of how it is intended to promote the licensing objectives. The significance of the operating schedule is that if the application for the club premises certificate is granted, the details will be incorporated into the certificate, which will set out the permitted activities and the limitations on them.

140.     Subsection (6) requires that the Secretary of State make regulations setting out how applications must be notified and advertised, and specifying when interested parties and responsible authorities can make representations to the authority.

Clause 72 - Determination of application for club premises certificate

141.     Subsections (1) and (2) provide that unless relevant representations are made in respect of an application for a club premises certificate, a licensing authority must grant a certificate in accordance with any such application which is duly made. That certificate will be subject to conditions consistent with those included in the application by the applicant in the operating schedule.

142.     Subsection (3), together with subsections (6) to (8), provides that where relevant representations are made, licensing authorities are required to hold a hearing. In order for representations to be 'relevant' they must have been made by an interested party or a responsible authority (see the definitions in clause 69) and they must relate to the likely effect of the grant of the certificate on the licensing objectives. If the representations are made by an interested party there is a further requirement that the licensing authority does not consider them to be frivolous or vexatious (but if it does, the authority is to explain its decision to the person who made the representations). The need for a hearing can be dispensed with by agreement of the authority, the applicant for the certificate and all of the parties who have made relevant representations.

143.     Subsection (4) provides that when a hearing is held (or dispensed with as indicated above), the licensing authority must, if it considers it necessary for the promotion of the licensing objectives, attach conditions to any certificate granted, rule out any of the qualifying club activities applied for, or reject the application. Otherwise the licensing authority will grant the certificate in the terms sought in the application.

144.     Subsection (9) provides that a licensing authority may, within the same certificate, impose different conditions on different parts of the premises, or impose different conditions in relation to different qualifying club activities.

Clause 73 - Prohibited conditions: associate members and their guests

145.     This clause provides that no conditions attached to a club premises certificate may prevent the supply of alcohol or entertainment to associate members of the club or their guests, if those activities are permitted by the rules of the club.

Clause 74 - Prohibited conditions: plays

146.     Under this clause, in the case of a club premises certificate authorising the performance of a play (see Schedule 1), licensing authorities will not be able to attach conditions relating to the nature of the play performed or the manner of its performance, unless they are justified as a matter of public safety. This clause reproduces for England and Wales the effect of section 1(2) of the Theatres Act 1968.

Clause 75 - Grant or rejection of application for club premises certificate

147.     By virtue of this clause a licensing authority which grants or refuses a club premises certificate must notify its decision to the applicant, to any person who made representations and to the chief officer of police for the area in which the premises are situated. If the application is granted, the licensing authority must also notify those parties of any steps it took in response to relevant representations and give its reasons. It must issue the club premises certificate, and a summary of that certificate, to the applicant. If the application is rejected, the licensing authority must notify those parties of the reasons for its decision.

Clause 76 - Form of certificate and summary

148.     This clause makes provision for a club premises certificate and the summary of that certificate to be in a form prescribed in regulations made by the Secretary of State. Subsection (2) lists the basic requirements which those regulations must include as to the content of the certificate. Under clause 92, the summary must be displayed at the relevant premises.

Clause 77 - Theft, loss etc. of certificate or summary

149.     Subsection (1) provides that a club may apply to the licensing authority for a copy of a club premises certificate or summary if that certificate or summary has been lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed. Subsection (3) provides that if the licensing authority is satisfied of the veracity of such an application, it must then issue a certified copy of that certificate. Where a certificate has been lost or stolen, there is an additional requirement that the club has reported this to the police. A fee may be prescribed for the issue of replacement documents. The Act applies in relation to a copy in the same way as it applies to the original.

Clause 78 - Period of validity of club premises certificate

150.     By virtue of this clause a club premises certificate has effect until it is withdrawn (see clauses 86 and 88) or it lapses on surrender by the club (see clause 79). Subsection (2) provides that a club premises certificate does not have effect during periods of suspension.

Clause 79 - Surrender of club premises certificate

151.     This clause provides that a club may voluntarily surrender its club premises certificate by returning it to the authority (or, if that is impractical, with a statement explaining why the certificate cannot be returned) accompanied by a notice of surrender. A club premises certificate lapses when the authority receives that notice of surrender.

Clause 80 - Notification of change of name or alteration of rules of club

152.     Under this clause, the secretary of a club must notify the relevant licensing authority of any change in the club's name or its rules. Notification of such a change must be accompanied by the certificate (unless that is impracticable and then a statement of the reasons as to why that is the case must be provided) and any fee that may have been prescribed. The licensing authority must amend the club premises certificate to record any such change, but a certificate may not be amended under this clause so as to change the premises to which it relates. Failure to notify the authority of such a change within 28 days is an offence.

Clause 81 - Change of relevant registered address of club

153.     Under this clause, the secretary of a club may notify the relevant licensing authority of any change in the club's address, and must do so if the club ceases to make use of the address which it has given as its relevant registered address. Notification of such a change must be accompanied by the certificate (unless that is impracticable and then a statement of the reasons as to why this is the case must be provided) and any fee that may have been prescribed. The licensing authority must amend the club premises certificate to record any such change. Failure by a club to notify the authority of a change of address when it has to do so is an offence.

Clause 82 - Application to vary club premises certificate

Clause 83 - Determination of application under section 82 and

Clause 84 - Supplementary provision about applications under section 82

154.     Under these clauses a club can apply, in the prescribed form and manner, to vary its club premises certificate in any way other than to vary substantially the premises to which it relates. Any such application may be subject to the payment of a fee and is subject to regulations under clause 71 relating to advertising requirements. The application must also be accompanied by the club premises certificate (unless that is impracticable, in which case a statement of reasons must be provided).

155.     Under clause 83 the licensing authority must make the variation as applied for unless relevant representations are made, in which case a hearing must be held. In order for representations to be 'relevant' they must have been made by an interested party or a responsible authority (see the definitions in clause 69) and they must relate to the likely effect on the licensing objectives if the application were to be granted. If the representations are made by an interested party there is a further requirement that the licensing authority does not consider them to be frivolous or vexatious (but if it does the authority is to explain its decision to the person who made the representations). The need for a hearing can be dispensed with by agreement of the authority, the applicant for the variation and all of the parties who have made relevant representations.

156.     By virtue of subsection (3) of clause 83, in any case where relevant representations have been made, the licensing authority must, if it considers it necessary for the promotion of the licensing objectives (see clause 5), modify the conditions of the certificate or reject the application for variation. Otherwise, the licensing authority must grant the variation in the terms sought. The authority must notify its decision to the applicant, the police and any person who has made relevant representations, and must give reasons for its decision. A variation of a club premises certificate may impose different conditions on different parts of the premises, or impose different conditions in relation to different qualifying club activities.

Clause 85 - Application for review of club premises certificate

157.     Subsections (1) to (3) make provision for an interested party, responsible authority or a member of the club in question to apply (in the prescribed manner and form and subject to any regulations that may be made about requirements as to notification and advertisements) to a licensing authority for a review of the club premises certificate. Subsections (4) to (7) provide that the authority can at any stage reject an application unless it is relevant to at least one of the licensing objectives, or (where the application is made by an interested party) if it is frivolous, vexatious or repetitious. (A ground for review is repetitious if it is identical or substantially similar to a ground for review already considered by the authority in a previous review or in the determination of the application for grant of the certificate, and a reasonable period has not passed since that time).

Clause 86 - Determination of application for review and

Clause 87 - Supplementary provision about review

158.     Under the provisions of these clauses the licensing authority must hold a hearing to consider and determine the application for a review and any relevant representations made in respect of it. Having regard to those matters, the authority must, if it considers it necessary for the promotion of the licensing objectives, modify the conditions of the certificate or the activities which it covers, suspend the authority of the certificate for a period not exceeding 3 months or revoke the certificate. Otherwise the certificate will not be altered.

159.     Clause 86 provides that for representations to be relevant they must be made by the club, a responsible authority or an interested party. If made by an interested party, the authority must be satisfied that they are not frivolous or vexatious. If the authority considers that they are, it must inform the party making the representations of its decision. The authority must notify the applicant, the club, any person who made relevant representations and the police of its decision and its reasons.

160.     A local authority that is both the relevant licensing authority and a responsible authority - for example, where it carries out the functions of the local environmental health authority - may apply for a review in its capacity as a responsible authority and determine that application.

Clause 88 - Club ceasing to be a qualifying club

161.     A club which ceases to meet the criteria set out at clauses 61,62 and 63 will have its certificate withdrawn by the licensing authority. Where a certificate is withdrawn because the club's membership has fallen below the required minimum (currently 25), the withdrawal would not have effect until three months after the authority gives notice and does not have effect if, by the end of those three months, the membership has risen to at least the required minimum.

162.     A justice of the peace may issue a search warrant authorising a constable to enter club premises (if necessary using force) to search them if he is satisfied that a club holding a club premises certificate ceases to meet the criteria necessary to be a qualifying club and evidence of such fact may be obtained at the club premises.

Clause 89 - Form etc. of applications and notices under Part 4

163.     This clause allows for the detail of the form, manner and content of applications, and any accompanying documents, to be set out in regulations.

Clause 90 - Fees

164.     Clubs may be required by regulations to pay an annual fee to the licensing authority, the amount and due date of which may be prescribed, or fees in relation to any applications or notices made under this Part.

Clause 91 - Licensing authority's duty to update club premises certificate

165.     This clause requires that the relevant licensing authority must amend the club premises certificate to reflect any determinations it makes, any notifications received by it or following the disposal of any appeal under Part 4 of the Bill. When the licensing authority is not in possession of the certificate, it may require the secretary of the club to produce it. Failure to do so without reasonable excuse is an offence.

Clause 92 - Duty to keep and produce certificate

Clause 93 - Provision supplementary to section 92

166.     Clubs must ensure that the certificate is held on the relevant premises, and that a summary of the certificate and notice of the nominated individual responsible for it on the premises are displayed prominently. Failure to comply with those provisions is an offence.

167.     A police officer or authorised person (see clause 69) may require production of the certificate; failure to produce it is an offence.

Clause 94 - Inspection of premises before grant of certificate etc.

168.     This clause makes provision for a constable authorised by the chief officer of police or an authorised person (see clause 69) to enter premises to which an application for a club premises certificate relates, or to which an application for a variation or a review of the certificate relates and inspect those premises, having given the club 48 hours notice. It is an offence to obstruct an authorised person exercising the power this clause confers. It is already an offence under the Police Act 1996 to obstruct a police officer in the course of his duty.

Clause 95 - Other powers of entry and search

169.     This clause provides that a constable may enter and search club premises where he has reasonable cause to believe that an offence in respect of controlled drugs has been, is being, or is about to be, committed there or there is likely to be a breach of the peace.

PART 5: Permitted temporary activities

170.     Part 5 makes provision for a system that would allow individuals - "premises users" - to carry out licensable activities on a temporary basis (for a period not exceeding 72 hours), subject to various conditions and limits attaching to the number of events which may be permitted. Different limits apply depending on whether or not the person carrying out licensable activities holds a personal licence (see Part 6) and the frequency of use of the premises.

171.     Examples of circumstances under which an individual might make use of the arrangements could include:

  • where a personal licence holder wishes to carry out one or more licensable activities at premises not covered by a premises licence relating to those activities. For example, a publican may be engaged to run a temporary bar for a wedding at a venue not licensed for the sale of alcohol, or may wish to provide a temporary disco in premises licensed for the sale of alcohol but not for the provision of public entertainment. For personal licence holders, the number of occasions which could be covered by these arrangements in any one year would be subject to a limit of 50.

  • where an individual who does not hold a personal licence wishes to carry out one or more licensable activities at any premises, regardless of whether they are covered by a premises licence relating to those activities. For example, an individual may wish to run a bar and provide a band at a party to celebrate a 50th wedding anniversary. This may be done by the same person on no more than five occasions in any one calendar year.

  • In both cases, the arrangements would only apply where the number of attendees at the event is lower than 500. In addition, no premises may be used more than five times in any one calendar year by virtue of this Part.

ECHR considerations

172.     No additional Convention rights are engaged by this Part of the Bill other than those already considered in the context of the broadly equivalent or similar provisions in Part 3 discussed in paragraphs 54 to 58 above.

Clause 96 - Meaning of 'permitted temporary activity'

173.     This clause provides that a 'permitted temporary activity' is one that is carried on in accordance with a temporary event notice given to the relevant licensing authority (see clause 98 paragraph 175 below) and which satisfies the following conditions:

      a)     the temporary event notice has been duly acknowledged by the licensing authority (see clause 100, paragraph 180 below) and notified to the police (see clause 102, paragraph 182 below)

      b)     the temporary event notice has not been subsequently withdrawn by the individual giving the notice and

      c)     the licensing authority has not issued a counter-notice. A counter-notice would be issued, if necessary, following a hearing of any objections raised by the police to the effect that the crime prevention objective would be undermined by allowing the activity to go ahead (see clause 103, paragraph 183 below) or if the permitted limits attaching to the person giving the notice or the premises would be exceeded (see clause 105, paragraph 185 below)

Clause 97 - The relevant licensing authority

174.     This clause defines the licensing authority for the purposes of this Part and as a consequence determines the authority, or authorities if the premises straddles more than one licensing authority area, to which a temporary event notice must be given.

Clause 98 - Temporary event notice

175.     This clause provides that an individual, known as a premises user, who proposes to carry on a licensable activity for a temporary period of not more than 72 hours may submit a notice to the relevant licensing authority of the proposal for the event. Such notice is defined as a temporary event notice. The premises user must be at least 18 years old.

176.     Subsections (4) and (5) provide that the notice must be in a form prescribed in regulations by the Secretary of State and set out certain details about the proposed event:

a)     the licensable activities that are to be carried out

b)     the total length of the event - which must not exceed 72 hours

c)     the times during the event that the licensable activities are to be carried out (for example, where an individual wishes to organise an event that covers 36 hours and where the bar will be open for two evenings within that time).

d)     the maximum number of people to be allowed on to the premises at any one time - which must be less than 500

e)     whether any alcohol sales are to be made for consumption on or off the premises (or both)

f)     any other information that may be prescribed by regulations.

177.     Subsection (6) requires that if the licensable activities proposed in the notice include the supply of alcohol, the notice must include a condition that all such supplies will be made by, or under the authority of, the premises user. The temporary event notice must be given to the licensing authority at least ten working days before the event. Before the time of the event the licensing authority must acknowledge the notice, the police must consider the notice and decide whether to give notice of objection and if the police object, the authority must, if necessary, convene a hearing, to decide whether to serve a counter notice. Although ten working days is the minimum specified, it is anticipated that in most circumstances greater notice will be given.

178.     The temporary event notice must be submitted in duplicate and accompanied by any fee prescribed in regulations made by the Secretary of State.

Clause 99 - Minimum of 24 hours between event periods

179.     This clause provides that there must be a minimum period of 24 hours between temporary events held on the same premises by a premises user, or held by that user and another person who is related to, associated with or in business with that user. This prevents a premises user holding numerous consecutive temporary events as a means of avoiding an application for a premises licence. If a temporary event takes place on premises that are included within or include other premises where another temporary event takes place, then the two events are deemed to take place on the same premises.

Clause 100 - Acknowledgement of notice

180.     Under this clause, the licensing authority must acknowledge the temporary event notice given to it by a premises user by returning the duplicate notice to the premises user within a specified period. However, subsection (3) provides that an acknowledgement is not to be given if the licensing authority has already served a counter notice on the premises user under clause 105 to the effect that the permitted number of events would be exceeded if the notified event took place.

Clause 101 - Withdrawal of notice

181.     This clause provides that a premises user can withdraw a temporary event notice up to 24 hours before the event is scheduled to take place. Once withdrawn, the notice does not count towards the limits on the number of temporary event notices that may be submitted by an individual during a calendar year.

Clause 102 - Objection to notice by the police

Clause 103 - Counter notice following police objection and

Clause 104 - Modification of notice following police objection

182.     Clause 102 provides that no later than ten working days before the beginning of the event period proposed in the temporary event notice, the premises user must give a copy of the notice to the chief officer of police in the relevant area. If the police are of the view that allowing the event to proceed would undermine the crime prevention objective, they must notify (an objection notice) the premises user and the relevant licensing authority, stating their reasons, no later than 48 hours after receipt of the copy of the notice.

183.     Clause 103 provides that if the police object the licensing authority must hold a hearing to consider the objection notice unless all parties agree that a hearing is unnecessary. If the authority accepts the police objection it must issue a counter-notice to the premises user in which case the event cannot proceed. If the authority does not accept the police objection it must inform the police. Any decision or counter-notice must be issued to the premises user at least 24 hours before the specified event period. A failure to do so will result in the premises user being able to proceed with the event.

184.     Clause 104 provides that, in cases where the police have given an objection notice, at any point between notification and the hearing, the police and premises user may agree to modify the temporary event notice, in order that it no longer undermines the promotion of the crime prevention objective. When temporary event notices are modified, the notice of objection by the police is withdrawn, and the modified temporary event notice has effect.

 
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Prepared: 17 March 2003