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Legal Q&A: security staff numbers at events and licence applications

By Poppleston Allen

- Last updated on GMT

Legal needs: a DPS must hold a personal licence
Legal needs: a DPS must hold a personal licence

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Specialist licensing solicitors Poppleston Allen's latest legal Q&A looks at the rules governing the reduction of security staff numbers for events and applying for a premises licence.

Reducing door security staff numbers for an event

Q: I recently obtained a temporary event notice (TEN) and, when I applied, the police asked me to use five door security staff for the event. At the time I agreed but I have now decided that I only really want to have three door staff on. Can I do this?

A. Agreements on TENs, such as where you have agreed with the police to provide additional door staff, do not have the same legal effect as a premises licence condition.

However, they are very important promises that you have made to the police and other relevant parties regarding how you will operate during a TEN.

It may be that, on the basis of the agreement, the police did not object to the TEN where they otherwise may have done. While you cannot ‘lose’ the TEN for breaking a promise, it is likely to be damaging to the relationship if you do not keep to the promises you have made.

In addition, the police and other officers will have enforcement powers available to them, including closure notices, formal and informal action against the premises licence and they may in addition object to any future TENs on the basis that they are not confident that any agreements in place will be adhered to.

If you are in time, you may be able to withdraw the TEN, renegotiate and obtain a new TEN.

Applying for a premises licence without a personal licence

Q: I would like to apply for a new premises licence and be the designated premises supervisor (DPS) but I do not yet have a personal licence. I have taken the course and intend to apply for my personal licence but can I get a premises licence in the meantime?

A. You do not need a personal licence to be a premises licence holder so as long as you fit into the category of a person who can hold a premises licence then you can go ahead and apply for one.

You cannot be a DPS until you hold a personal licence. Taking the course is not enough; you need to actually have obtained a personal licence. If the premises licence is granted, it will contain a mandatory condition that no supply of alcohol can be made until the DPS holds their personal licence. If you have not obtained a personal licence by the time you are ready sell alcohol, you will need to vary the DPS named on the premises licence to somebody who holds a personal licence and is in daily control of the premises.

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