Club premises certificate
Qualifying clubs require a club premises certificate to supply alcohol and provide regulated entertainment including films, music, singing and dancing.
A qualifying club must satisfy a number of conditions, the minimum of which are below:
- a person may not be given memberships or as a candidate for membership must not be given any membership privileges without an interval of at least two days from their membership application or nomination and their membership being granted
- club rules state that those becoming members without nomination or application cannot have membership privileges for at least two days between them becoming members and being admitted to the club
- the club is established and conducted in good faith
- the club has at least 25 members
- alcohol is only sold to members on the premises on behalf or by the club
Who can apply?
A qualifying club can apply for a club premises certificate for any premises which are occupied and used regularly for club purposes. The club must carry on activities from premises to which public access is restricted and alcohol is supplied other than for profit.
Applications must be accompanied with a plan of the premises and the club rules.
As well as applying for a club premises certificate, you will also need to complete the club declaration form, which will be available at the end of the club premises licence application. It is a declaration that your club meets qualifying club status and must accompany your application for a club premises certificate.
How long are certificates valid for?
Certificates are valid indefinitely, however failure to pay the annual fee will result in the licence being suspended.
What happens next?
Following submission of a successful application, we will normally reach a decision within 28 days. However if a person or responsible authority such as the police make a representation about your application, we will hold a hearing to discuss the application and concerns raised. The outcome of the hearing may be a decision to:
- grant the certificate in accordance with the application
- grant the certificate with amendments/additional conditions
- refuse the application
If any party is unhappy with the decision reached at the hearing they can appeal to the court within 21 days of the decision.
Vary your certificate
You can apply to vary your licence, for example if you wish to add a licensable activity, extend the hours or change the layout of the premises.
There are two types of variations, full and minor. Each variation attracts a different fee.
It is possible to make small changes to your premises licence or club premises certificate through the minor variation process which is cheaper, easier and quicker than the full variation process.
Surrender your certificate
Where a club which holds a club premises certificate decides to surrender it, the club may give the licensing authority a notice to that affect.
In the application, there are three sets of questions relating to the club rules or arrangements that will allow the licensing authority (LA) to determine whether the club rules meet the conditions of the Act for qualifying clubs. Only one set of questions should be completed, depending on what type of club is applying.
Registered societies under the Industrial and Provident Societies Act 1965 or the Friendly Societies Act 1974 and registered friendly societies under the Friendly Societies Act 1992 should complete the questions in section 1. Miners’ welfare institutes should complete the questions in section 2 and applicants for clubs not falling into these categories should complete the questions in section 3. It is an offence to make a false statement, which on conviction, is liable to a fine of up to £5,000.
The regulations also require a copy of the club rules with the application. The licensing authority will determine whether the club rules meet the conditions of the Act for qualifying clubs in relation to qualifying club activities. The club secretary must give the LA notice of any change in the name of the club or alteration of the rules (even when the club has made an application for a club premises certificate which has not yet been determined). The LA may reject an application for a club premises certificate if it appears that the club does not satisfy the conditions for being a qualifying club in relation to the activities on the certificate.
Applications must be advertised as set out in the act and the Licensing Act 2003 (Premises licences and club premises certificates) Regulations 2005. This includes displaying a sign at or outside the premises and an advertisement in a locally circulating newspaper. We will forward a copy of an example public notice once the application is received.
Under the minor variation process, you are not required to advertise the variation in a newspaper or circular or copy it to responsible authorities. However, you must display it on a white notice the notice must be displayed for a period of ten working days starting on the working day after the minor variation application was given to the licensing authority. We will forward a copy of an example public notice once the application is received.
You will be asked to describe the steps you intend to take to promote the four licensing objectives:
- the prevention of crime and disorder
- public safety
- the prevention of public nuisance
- the protection of children from harm
You should already be complying with these requirements, so if you feel there is nothing more you need to do, then you might wish to write ‘N/A’ when completing the application. This shows you have considered the objectives and come to a decision that you have nothing additional to do and not that you have forgotten to write anything in this section.
If a responsible authority for one of the licensing objectives considers that you need to do more, they will be able to make representations. If you do intend to take additional measures, you should consider carefully what to include. Anything you put down here is likely to become a condition of your licence. Failure to meet those conditions would constitute an offence under the act.
You should think carefully about adding conditions to ensure that they are achievable, realistic, appropriate, proportionate and within your control. Base your response on a proper, common sense consideration of the risks and what you can realistically do to mitigate them.
How can I find out what a club is licensed for?
You can find what activities and hours a club is licensed for by searching our public register. The Live Music Act 2012 also highlights which activities are licensable.
Review a certificate
If problems persist and are serious in nature you can request a review of your certificate.
Notification of interest in a premises
If you have an interest in a premises you can register a notification of interest. Anyone with an interest in the property can apply however your application will only be accepted if you are:
- the freeholder/leaseholder
- a legal mortgagee
- a person in occupation of the property
The notice will last for 12 months and you will need to give us new notice each year. There is a fee to register for a notification of interest.
How can I make a complaint?
If you are experiencing problems with a club you can make a complaint.