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Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 - Update

Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 - Update

Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 – Update

On 1st September 2009 the provisions of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 came fully into effect when the old system of separate public house, hotel etc licences was replaced by a single Premises Licence for all off-sales and on-sales premises, each with their own individual operating plan. The operating plan for licensed premises includes such details as trading hours for alcohol sales (on sales and off sales), admission of children and young persons, details of facilities and services and maximum occupancy numbers.

Each Premises requires to have a formally designated Premises Manager who has to hold a Personal Licence, having previously obtained an approved licensing qualification. All staff serving alcohol now require to have undergone mandatory training, and formal training records kept of this. The new Premises Licences, in a departure from the old licensing system, now contain a number of mandatory national conditions as well as local conditions decided by the individual Licensing Board.

Various Licensing principles underpin the new legislation
• Preventing crime and disorder
• Securing public safety
• Preventing public nuisance
• Protecting and improving public health
• Protecting children from harm
Arising from these are the much heralded Scottish Government restrictions on “irresponsible” drinks promotions, particularly for the on-sales trade although these also apply for off-sales. Difficulties are however being faced by licence holders in ascertaining whether specific promotions are “irresponsible” or otherwise. Only time will tell who is right and which promotions are truly irresponsible. Watch this space…

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