Premises licences

A premises licence under the Licensing Act 2003 is required for any premises where any of the following take place:

  • Sale of alcohol by retail
  • Regulated entertainment
  • The provision of hot food or hot drink between 23:00 and 05:00 on any day

Regulated entertainment is defined as:

  • A performance of a play
  • An exhibition of a film
  • An indoor sporting event
  • A boxing or wrestling entertainment
  • A performance of live music
  • Any playing of recorded music
  • A performance of dance
  • Anything similar to music or dancing

Live Music Act 2012

The Live Music Act took effect from 1 October 2012, and since 6th April 2015 now applies to recorded music, and covers larger audiences. Further information is available from the above link.

Apply for a premises licence

Please see the prescribed forms and guidance for detailed information on making applications. Applications must be returned to the Licensing Team with all required accompanying documents and the fee, and copies sent to the appropriate responsible authorities. Application forms are prescribed by the legislation, as are the responsible authorities who should be consulted prior to applications being made, particularly those for variation or new licences.

172F Authorisation of off-sales for a limited period

The Business and Planning Bill amends the Licensing Act 2003 by adding Section 172F to allow premises to have off sales until 31st March 2025. Premises should notify the Licensing Authority of their intention to take advantage of this amendment and MUST clearly display at the premises a notice advising of this. Further information and a template is available

Planning Permission

Applicants should check compliance with the planning permission for the premises and if necessary local planning policies, such as the City Centre Action Plan and in particular to pages 38 to 42 if you are considering operating after 11pm.

Online annual fee payments

You can make a one-off Debit or Credit card payment online via the council's secure online payment service. You are not required to register to use this service. Your card must be registered for 3D Secure for the payment to be successful.


Before you make a payment

You won't be able to save this form to complete later, so please allow yourself a couple of minutes to fill in the form.

You will need:

  • A payment card, Apple Pay or Google Pay*
  • Licence number

Pay an annual fee online

The information available in the guidance notes is not a substitute for prospective applicants obtaining their own specialist legal advice - please note that the city council's staff cannot provide legal advice about your application.

Please note that a Designated Premises Supervisor (DPS) is only required where alcohol is to be sold; once a premises licence has been granted, it can be varied to change the DPS and the DPS can ask to be removed from the licence, and may need to give notice to the premises licence holder for the licence to be returned for amendment. Appropriate forms are available. Special arrangements may apply in the case of village halls and parish halls where the sale of alcohol is authorised. 

Tables and chairs outside premises

Permission to place tables and chairs on the highway (including pavements) outside premises is dealt with by the council's Highways Team.

Mandatory conditions

All premises licences are potentially subject to one or more of the Mandatory Conditions, specified under sections 19, 19A, 20 and 21 of the Licensing Act 2003. These relate to the sale and supply of alcohol, the exhibition of films and door supervision, and appear on individual licences. Section 32 and schedule 4 of the Policing and Crime Act 2009 gives the Home Secretary power to specify additional Mandatory Conditions on all premises selling or supplying alcohol. They are as follows:

  • Irresponsible promotions and games - (on sales/supply only)
  • Free potable water for customers - (on sales/supply only)
  • Age verification policy - (on and off sales/supply)
  • Choice of small measures - (on sales/supply only)
  • Prohibition of the sale of alcohol at a price below the total of duty plus VAT - (on and off sales/supply)

Information on the mandatory conditions, a calculator for duty plus VAT, the Home Office's updated Guidance on Banning selling alcohol below the cost of duty plus VAT, guidance on selling alcohol responsibly and good practice examples and an example of an age verification policy. Please note that the mandatory conditions are effective whether or not they physically appear on your licence.

Data Protection

Please note that the licensing authority may be required by law to disclose to the appropriate authorities, from time to time, further information relating to applications and licences for the purposes of law enforcement and the prevention of fraud.