Pavement Licences and Off-Sales of Alcohol - Business and Planning Act 2020. Amendment to Temporary Event Notices under the Licensing Act 2003
The Committee were presented with an update on the provisions of the Business and Planning Act 2020 relating to pavement licences and associated off-sales of alcohol, and temporary amendments made to the Licensing Act 2003 with regard to Temporary Event Notices.
The Senior Licensing Officer advised that on 25 June 2020 the Government introduced the Business and Planning Bill into the House of Commons. Within just four weeks, and following a series of amendments, the Bill received Royal Assent on 22 July.
The provisions of the Business and Planning Act 2020, which seek to promote economic recovery and growth, came into effect immediately and included:
- The introduction of a new, temporary, fast-track process for businesses selling (or proposing to sell) food and drink to obtain a ‘Pavement Licence’ from their local authority for the placement of furniture, such as tables and chairs, on the pavement outside their premises.
- An associated amendment to the Licensing Act 2003 to allow premises with a licence authorising ‘on-sales’ only (sales of alcohol for consumption on the premises) to automatically have ‘off-sales’ added to their licence.
Both provisions were intended to be temporary only until 30 September 2021. These provisions have since been extended to 30 September 2022.
All the businesses that had obtained a ‘Pavement Licence’ from Gravesham that expired on 30 September 2021 have applied again and that licence will now expire on 30 September 2022. The Council charged a fee of £100 for each ‘Pavement Licence’.
The Government has brought in an amendment to the Temporary Event Notice (TEN) which changed the number of TENs a single premises can be given in a calendar year. Under the current regulations premises can hold 15 event notices covering up to 21 days. The new regulations permit a premise to hold 21 events covering up to 26 days. This easement is currently in place for 2022 and 2023 only.
If a premises requests a TEN from 11pm – 1am that will count as 2 days. The premises does not have to request a TEN for one whole building, it could be a specific area within those premises.
The Licensing Team are currently working with the Digital Team to update the application form for TEN to go live from 1 January 2022.
In response to Members questions concerning the report, the Senior Licensing Officer and Regulatory Services Manager explained that:
- In response to a Member’s question about whether there is any evidence to show if more TENs were issued are there more incidents reported with people drinking outside. The Senior Licensing Officer explained that licensed premises apply to extend their hours for a specific reason, when the application is received the Police and Environmental Protection Team are consulted and they can put in any objections.
- A Standard TEN and a Late TEN were discussed. A standard temporary event notice is one which is submitted to the Council, Police and Environmental Health at least 10 clear working days before the event takes place. If the Police or Environmental Health put in any objections, a licensing panel hearing will take place where it will be considered. If the premises holds a Premises Licence under the Licensing Act 2003conditions from the licence may be attached to their temporary event notice. A late TEN is one that is submitted between 5 – 9 clear working days before the event. If the Police or Environmental Health put in any objections, the TEN is refused and there is not the option to appeal the decision.
- The Senior Licensing Officer explained that they did not think more outdoor drinking would take place. A number of the TEN applications are currently for indoor activities and for Christmas events.
- A TEN for each event you hold on the same premises is required. A non-personal licence holder can submit up to 5 TENs a year. If you have a personal licence to sell alcohol, you can submit up to 50 TENs a year. A single premises can currently have up to 15 TENs submitted in one year, as long as the total length of the events is not more than 21 days. If the premises are organising separate but consecutive events, there must be at least a 24 hour gap between them. One event if permitted to last for a maximum of 168 hours.
- The ‘Pavement Licence’ that is currently being dealt with by Gravesham will last until September 2022 anything after that (if the rules do not change) will be processed by Kent County Council Highway’s Authority.
- The ‘Pavement Licences’ that have been issued in Gravesham are to allow the use of seats and tables to expand premises to recover from COVID.
- The Chair explained that if someone buys alcohol from an off-licence and drinks it outside a premises they are not breaking the law but the licensee could be breaking the law for supplying the alcohol.
Resolved that Members noted the content of the report.