Thousands yet to apply for new licences in Scotland

By Matt Eley Matt

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Personal licences, License, Edinburgh

Thousands of Scottish publicans have yet to apply for new personal licences, according to the Scottish Beer & Pub Association (SBPA). The trade...

Thousands of Scottish publicans have yet to apply for new personal licences, according to the Scottish Beer & Pub Association (SBPA).

The trade group submitted a freedom of information request at the end of March and has discovered that up to that point only 11,200 personal licence applications had been submitted.

There are approximately 17,000 listed licensed premises in Scotland and all need to have at least one personal licence-holder by the time new laws come into force on September 1.

Of the 11,200 applications lodged a total of 7,683 have been granted, five rejected and the remainder are still pending. But only 3,000 of the applications (26 per cent) have so far resulted in licences being issued.

Patrick Browne, SBPA chief executive, said: "These figures are a snapshot of the position several weeks ago and it may have moved on, but these numbers should be of real concern to anyone involved in the administration of Scotland's licensed industry.

"They clearly demonstrate that there is a significant shortfall in the numbers of applications that have been lodged for personal licences. At the very least we will need to have roughly 17,000 personal licences issued, but at the time of our research in late March to mid-April there were only 11,000 applications lodged."

The licensing boards with the highest percentages of personal licence applications granted were the Stirling and Western Isles Licensing Boards which had granted 100 per cent and the City of Edinburgh Licensing Board which had granted 98 per cent.

Brown added: "Those boards that haven't yet issued personal licences need to start doing so with some urgency. The same urgency should also apply to those who haven't applied for their personal licences or to those that have and where a personal licence has been issued to designate their premises manager."

Related topics: Licensing law, Property law

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