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Guidance to licensing authorities

The Gambling Commission's guidance for licensing authorities.


2 - Initiation of review by licensing authority

10.5. S.200 of the Act provides that licensing authorities may initiate a review in relation to a particular premises licence or a particular class of premises licence. Licensing authorities may wish to consider in their scheme of delegations who initiates reviews, and any checking system of that to prevent unwarranted reviews from being conducted.

10.6. In relation to a class of premises, the licensing authority may review the use made of premises and, in particular, the arrangements that premises licence holders have made to comply with licence conditions. In relation to these general reviews, it is likely that the licensing authority will be acting as a result of concerns or complaints about particular types of premises, which may result in them looking at, for example, default conditions that apply to that category of licence.

10.7. In relation to particular premises, the licensing authority may review any matter connected with the use made of the premises if:

  • it has reason to suspect that premises licence conditions are not being observed
  • the premises is operating outside of the principles set out in the licensing authority’s statement of policy
  • there is evidence to suggest that compliance with the licensing objectives is at risk
  • for any other reason which gives them cause to believe that a review may be appropriate, such as a complaint from a third party.

10.8. A formal review would normally be at the end of a process of ensuring compliance by the operator(s) which might include an initial investigation by a licensing authority officer, informal mediation or dispute resolution. If the concerns are not resolved then, after a formal review, the licensing authority may impose additional conditions or revoke the licence.

10.9. The licensing authority must give written notice to the licence holder and responsible authorities that it intends to undertake a review and must also publish notice of its intention to carry out the review. The Gambling Act 2005 (Premises Licences)(Review) Regulations 2007 (opens in new tab)(SI 2007/2258) and the Gambling Act 2005 (Review of Premises Licences)(Scotland) Regulations 2007 (opens in new tab) (SSI 2007/394) require the licensing authority to display notice at a place which is as near as reasonably practicable to the relevant premises or where it can be conveniently read by members of the public. The notice must be displayed for no less than 28 consecutive days, starting on the day that the licensing authority gives notice to the holder of the premises licence.

10.10. In addition, the notice must be published either:

  • in a local newspaper or, if there is none, a local newsletter, circular or similar document within the licensing authority’s area, at least once during the period of ten working days from the day on which the licensing authority gives notice to the holder of the premises licence, or
  • on the licensing authority’s internet website for no less than 28 consecutive days, starting on the day that the licensing authority gives notice to the holder of the premises licence.
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