QI am a full-time barman working 47 to 50 hours a week. I have just had a note from the employing company saying that from this year I am now entitled to 20 days of leave instead of 15. Am I entitled to any back pay for holidays? AUnder the Working Time Regulations workers are entitled to four weeks' paid leave each year. This is not 20 days it depends on the number of days worked in a week. The actual number of days will vary, depending on how many days you work, but the overall entitlement remains at four weeks. An employer can require a worker to take all or any of the leave entitlement on specified dates provided the worker is given written notice before the leave is due to start. The period of notice must be at least twice as long as the leave period, for example, three weeks' leave would require a minimum of six weeks' notice. Otherwise, workers are entitled to choose their leave dates subject to giving notice in the same way as employers are required to do and any other company rules. Such rules should be notified to workers in writing. A worker whose normal working hours vary from week to week, as yours do, would receive the average hourly rate of pay over an average of their normal weekly working hours through the previous 12 weeks. The regulations came into force in 1999, so I think you should contact your local office of ACAS to see if you can claim any back holiday pay. Don't turn a blind eye to bets Q We have a healthy lunch-time trade and a big racing clientele. I am worried about the betting element when the TV is on. Is it okay for a man to fill in a betting slip while taking a pint and reading a newspaper? What about handing bets to a friend? Can it affect my licence? AThere's a fine dividing line between what is and is not allowed when it comes to betting on licensed premises, so landlords have to be doubly careful. There are still many prosecutions in this area, and the police are on the lookout. With regard to betting with a bookmaker, it is illegal for a person to "use, cause or knowingly permit any premises to be used..." for the purposes of betting transactions. It is also an offence to allow other people to use premises for betting transactions whether as punters or as a bookmaker or bookmaker's representative. So a licensee must not turn a "blind eye" to betting transactions on his premises, because he could be caught out. However, the police must show that actual transactions took place on the premises, of which the licensee ought to have been aware. It is not enough to show either a single transaction, or to show that people discussed racing or betting, or exchanged tips (even for money, I would presume). Filling in a betting slip or handing it to a friend is not illegal on licensed premises, as long as the bet is placed in the betting shop and the money changes hands there.