Licensing Policy Consultation 2023

Closes 26 Jun 2023

Opened 15 May 2023


What is the Licensing Policy?

The Licensing Policy is the document that sets out the principles to be applied when the Council and its partners are considering applications under the Licensing Act 2003 for:

  • The sale or supply of alcohol
  • Regulated entertainment such as live music, recorded music and cinema
  • The provision of late night refreshment
  • Supply of alcohol in qualifying clubs

Why is the Policy being reviewed?

The Licensing Act 2003 requires that the Council review the Licensing Policy at least every five years, consulting the public on a draft Licensing Policy and making revisions to the policy as appropriate. The current Policy has been in place since 1 August 2018.

Through the Licensing Policy, the Council sets out to promote the four licensing objectives of the Licensing Act 2003, which are:

  • The prevention of crime and disorder
  • Public safety
  • The prevention of public nuisance
  • The protection of children from harm 

Is much being changed in the Policy?

The proposed changes from the version of the Policy effective from August 2018 have largely been kept to a minimum. For example LP1 General Principles, LP3 Core Hours, LP4 Off Sales and LP6 External Areas and Outdoor Events remain unchanged. Updates to information following the 2021 Census, references to Hackney Nights, WAVE and climate action are also included.

What about the Special Policy Areas?

There will be no more references to specifically defined "Special Policy Areas" (SPAs), namely Dalston and Shoreditch. Instead the SPA policy is stated but does not refer to any specific areas or boundaries. There will be a rebuttable presumption to refuse applications in an SPA unless the applicant can demonstrate that their proposal will not add to the cumulative impact already being experienced.

What about Special Consideration Areas?

The Policy will introduce Special Consideration Areas (SCAs). These are for areas where negative impacts similar to those in Special Policy Areas have been identified. However, these impacts are deemed not to be at a level requiring a presumed refusal of an application. Instead applicants are expected to address these issues in their application and put in place measures to mitigate these impacts.

How will the areas where SPAs and SCAs apply be defined?

A separate Cumulative Impact Assessment will be prepared which will assess if any areas are suffering from cumulative impact as a result of licensed premises being concentrated in those areas. It is a requirement under the Licensing Act 2003 to review a cumulative impact assessment at least every three years.

You can view the "Proposed Statement of Licensing Policy 2023-2028" by clicking the link at the bottom of the page.  We would recommend that you read this document before completing the questionnaire.

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