Government proposes to abolish personal licences

By Gurjit Degun

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Personal licences, License

Jeremy Browne: “We have estimated that this proposal could save businesses some £10m a year"
Jeremy Browne: “We have estimated that this proposal could save businesses some £10m a year"
The pub trade could see the end of personal licences as the Government has launched a consultation asking whether such licences should be abolished.

The minister of state for crime prevention, Jeremy Browne, said the move could save businesses around £10m a year.

He explained that the Government found that the personal licence system may not always be the “most targeted and proportionate way to ensure alcohol is sold responsibly”.

“For example, all premises – from the riskiest to the quietest – must comply with the system regardless of whether it is locally appropriate or not,” he added.

The consultation proposes enabling targeted, local alternatives to personal licences through locally applied conditions to premises licences.

Currently, all alcohol sales must be authorised by a personal licence holder, who must have completed training on the risks alcohol can present if handled irresponsibly. They must also notify licensing authorities if they commit any offence which suggests they may be unsuitable as a manager at licensed premises.

Trade discussions

Browne said that the decision came after extensive discussions with the trade, police and local Government during the recent Alcohol Strategy consultation.

He added: “We have estimated that this proposal could save businesses, including small and medium enterprises, some £10m a year if taken forward, while keeping a focus on measures to tackle crime and disorder at licensed premises.

“This consultation is an opportunity for licensing authorities, the licensed trade, police officers and the general public to share their views on this proposal. In particular, the Government is seeking views on whether it would cut costs for businesses and maintain appropriate safeguards against crime and disorder at licensed premises.”

British Beer and Pub Association chief executive Brigid Simmonds said: “We welcome the recognition from the minister that local pubs play a positive role in communities and drive growth. We support the Government’s intention to free up responsible pub businesses and reduce costs, and we will be looking at these proposals in detail and discuss their potential impact with our members.”

The consultation runs until 7 November. Click here​ for the details. 

Related topics: Licensing law

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