Licensing lawyers for licence reviews and licence appeals
Premises licence holders are required to promote the four licensing objectives:
- Preventing public nuisance
- Preventing crime and disorder
- Protecting children from harm
- Promoting public safety
If these objectives are not met, for example if excessive noise is made and the establishment is causing nuisance to local residents, licencees may find their licence under threat, with restrictions placed on their business or their business being closed down. Licence holders may also unwittingly commit offences such as selling alcohol to a person under 18 or where clients are found to be using drugs on the premises. We have substantial experience of representing owners and licencees faced with enforcement action.
We have represented clients for expedited reviews, interim steps hearings, full premises licence review hearings and police closure orders before the courts. In our experience, whatever the offence may be, it is critical to engage with the responsible authorities.
If you are not satisfied with the result of a licensing hearing before a sub-committee, you have the right to appeal to the magistrates court. We have vast experience of licensing appeals and will guide you through the process, advising you on the best strategy commercially and practically.
An appeal must be lodged within 21 days of receiving the decision from the licensing authority, so time is of the essence when contacting us.
We have close working relationships with licensing authorities, who we will regularly liaise with before an appeal hearing to help negotiate a favourable settlement on your behalf.
Our reviews and appeals work includes
- We advised a West London bar on a review of its premises licence following a murder on their premises, successfully ensuring there was no suspension or revocation of the premises licence
- We acted for a shopkeeper in Slough who was accused of having non-duty paid cigarettes and alcohol for sale in his shop. His premises licence was revoked following a licence review. We were instructed to appeal the decision, ensuring that his licence was restored pending the appeal, which was eventually successful.
- We successfully appealed a decision of a licence hearing which had denied a premises licence to a coffee shop in Brighton. The premises were located in a cumulative impact area, meaning there was a presumption of refusal. We helped the client obtain their premises licence, as well as recovering their legal costs.
- We advised a South London themed restaurant/bar which was the subject of a licence review following the assault of a customer outside the premises who later died. A police investigation revealed numerous breaches of licence conditions, however, following our intervention we were able to safeguard the premises licence and avoid revocation.
- We acted in the appeal of a licensing decision not to grant a pub increased hours which had been applied for. The licence holder had represented himself at the council hearing but had his application refused. He instructed us to appeal. Despite some residents being opposed to the variation, none of the responsible authorities were against it. Faced with the prospect of not only the police but also the council’s own licensing officer giving evidence against it, this London borough agreed not to contest the appeal and paid our client’s costs.