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Premises licence (Licensing Act 2003)

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 (plays, films, indoor sporting events, live/recorded music or any performance of dance)
  • the provision of hot food or hot drink between 11pm and 5am on any day

Eligibility criteria

Applicants must be 18 or older (if you're selling alcohol).

Legislation summary

View the Licensing Act 2003 and the Licensing Act 2003 (Personal and Premises Licences) (Forms) (Amendment) Regulations 2018.

Licensing policy

The revised licensing Policy (pdf, 1.7mb) is available to download.  

Fees

You can view our Licensing Act licence fees (pdf, 61kb).

Applying for a new licence

Apply for a new premises licence

We advise you to read the guidance notes before applying.

You'll need to upload the following documents with your form:

  • a plan of the premises (to a scale of at least 1:100)
  • if you wish to sell alcohol, the application must be accompanied by a consent form from the proposed DPS to show that they consent to taking on this responsible role; download the consent form (pdf, 13kb). The DPS must be signed by the individual and submitted with the application 
  • guidance for entitlement to work for individual applicants (pdf, 215kb)

Once your application is submitted and paid for online, it's automatically sent to the responsible authorities; so there's no need for applicants to send in paper hard copies.

If you want to check the rateable value of your premises, visit the GOV.UK website

Advertising the application

A notice of the application must be displayed on the premises during a period of 28 consecutive days starting on the day after the day on which the application is made to the licensing authority. You can download a copy of the public notice (pdf, 152kb) . You must also send a copy of the notice (pdf, 168kb) to the local newspaper.

Representations must be made in writing to the Licensing Service at the office address or email licensing@southwark.gov.uk and be received by the service within a period of 28 days starting the day after the date on the notice. 

You must also ensure:

  • the notice must be printed on A3 blue paper
  • that the notice is properly displayed and clearly legible for the duration of the 28 day consultation period
  • that you laminate the notice (if it's being displayed outside) so that it's weatherproof
  • that you display the notice outside (otherwise shutters at your premise may obscure the notice)
  • to advertise in a local newspaper within 10 working days of submitting the application

Tacit consent

After the 28 day consultation period has expired, and if no representations have been received, the licence will be granted and issued.

Once the licence is granted, it's valid indefinitely but is subject to an annual fee which is due on the date of the licence grant.

Change of address

Occasionally there may be the need to change the details within your licence. You can:

  • request a replacement licence
  • change the address details of the existing DPS
  • change your registered address
  • change the name of your premises

If you’re the licence holder and wish to request these changes:

Notify us of a change of address

Licence suspensions

Premises licence suspension for non-payment of annual fees

It's very important that all premises licence holders understand that annual licence fees in respect of premises licences and club premises certificates must now be paid within 21 days of the due date or the licence will be subject of suspension.

If the fee is not paid in the time allowed a formal notice will be served by the council. The licensee must then stop providing any activity covered by the licence at the premises concerned. The suspension continues until such time as the fee is paid. Failure to comply with the suspension notice constitutes an offence in law.

Provisional statement

You can apply for a provisional statement whilst a premises is under construction.

Apply for a provisional statement

After submitting your application, an A3 notice (pdf, 31kb) must be placed in the window of the premises for the whole duration of the 28 day consultation period. Please note that this has to be printed on A3 blue paper.

Useful information

  • if you wish to join the Women’s Safety Charter initiative, sign up online
  • if the premises will be selling food or drink then you must complete the food business registration form; for more details see registering a food business
  • if the premises wishes to have tables and chairs outside their premises for the use of customers, you must apply for a licence
If you're experiencing issues applying for a licence or if you have any questions, email licensing@southwark.gov.uk

Page last updated: 08 November 2021

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