Objecting to licensing conditions and applications
If a premises has made a new licence application or wants to vary an existing licence and you are concerned about it, you may want to object. This process is called making a representation.
Under the Licensing Act 2003, representations may be made for:
- a new premises licence
- a variation of an existing premises licence
- a new club premises certificate
- a variation of an existing club premises certificate
- review application of an existing premises licence or club premises certificate
- variation of DPS (police only)
- transfer (police and Home Office only)
Responsible authorities such as:
- Fire and Rescue
- Local planning authority
- Enforcing agency for health and safety
- Enforcing agency for weights and measures
- Child protection agency
- Local Health Board
- Licensing authority
- Environmental Protection
- Home Office
And any other person.
Representations must be made in writing to us and must be received during the representation period.
The statutory representation period begins the day after a valid application is received by us and lasts for 28 days. During this time there must be at least one notice in the local paper and a notice displayed on the premises for 28 days. The application will also appear on the current applications page.
If representations are made against an application which cannot be resolved through mediation, then the application will be heard by our Licensing Committee. The hearing must be carried out within 20 working days ('working day' is any day other than a Saturday, Sunday or a Bank Holiday) from the end of the consultation period.
An appeal process is available to the applicant and those who made representations to an application, if they are not satisfied with the decision of the licensing committee.
We issue a notice of the decision to the applicant and anyone who made relevant representations. Appeals can be made against new, variation and review applications.
Any appeal must be lodged at the local Magistrates' Court within 21 days of the date the applicant was informed of the committee's decision.
Representations (objections) must relate to the likely effects of granting the licence on one or more of the following four licensing objectives:
- the prevention of crime and disorder
- the prevention of public nuisance
- the protection of children from harm
- public safety.
If a representation or request does not relate to one of these objectives it will be deemed invalid. Representations must, therefore, link to one or more of the objectives.
Representations and requests must not be 'vexatious' or 'frivolous', or the licensing authority will not consider them. This means anything that is trivial, isn't serious or is just meant to be annoying. For example, we might find that representation was vexatious if it was lodged because of a dispute between rival businesses or it might be a frivolous representation if it plainly lacked seriousness.
Relevant representations could be of a personal nature, and should reflect how such an application could, or would affect you and your family's normal life.
An example concerning the public nuisance objective could be the possibility of regulated entertainment disturbing sleep, especially those of young children, or family members who work shifts or reflect the simple intrusion into family life.
It will help if your objections are specific to the premises and you have evidence to support this. You may wish to document problems by keeping a diary with dates and times of specific problems, or by taking photographs of any incidents.
If the matter goes to a hearing the councillors at the hearing will need to be satisfied that there is an evidential link between the representations made and the effect on the licensing objectives.
Important things to consider
Any relevant representations that are received will be included in a report to the hearings panel. This report will be a public document, and will be circulated to the parties involved prior to the hearing.
Representations cannot be made anonymously.
Please remember that lodging a representation about an application is a serious matter. Any representation or request must be factually correct. It is an offence to knowingly or recklessly make a false statement in connection with an application and the maximum fine for which a person is liable on summary conviction for such an offence is £5,000. This may include your name and address if appropriate to the application.
The Licensing Team is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy when you use our services. Please view Licensing Team Privacy Notices for further information. Printed copies are available on request.