Licensing Standards Monthly Newsletter - April 2022

Coronavirus in Scotland

All Covid-19 rules and restrictions have now been lifted in Scotland, but the virus has not gone away. Here is a reminder from Scottish Government of where we are now and how to keep yourself safe.

This is the final update on Coronavirus for the time being.  Should the situation change we will update the Newsletter as necessary.

Health and Safety Executive – hospitality venues urged to arrange checks for outdoor installations ahead of busy period

Pubs, restaurants and other hospitality venues are being urged to check that electrical installations and electrical equipment for use in outdoor spaces are safe as they enter the spring and summer season.  The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is working with representatives from the hospitality industry and local authority enforcement officers to increase awareness and to improve safety standards.

HSE is stressing that venues should arrange for a competent person to carry out electrical installation work, only using lights and heaters specifically designed for outdoor use, and regularly checking equipment for damage or water ingress. The fixed installation and electrical appliances should be inspected, tested and maintained in accordance with the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989.  John Rowe, HSE’s Head of Operational Strategy said:

“The hospitality sector will be looking forward to an exciting and busy period, as it prepares for the spring and summer seasons, which will include major events such as the Commonwealth Games and the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Those responsible for outdoor spaces will be planning to make use of them. It is important to make sure electrical equipment is in good condition, particularly as it may have been unused and in storage for a long period of time.”

The information below is for the installation and use of plug-in electrical equipment.  Anyone selecting, using or maintaining such equipment should be competent to do so.

Before installing any outdoor equipment:

  • Consider using extra low voltage or solar equipment to provide a safer installation
  • Only select equipment that is suitable for outdoor use
  • Check that equipment is not damaged particularly if it has been stored from previous use.
  • Ensure that the existing electrical installation is in good condition and compatible with the equipment to be installed.  This will include being able to accommodate the electrical load so that circuits and sockets are not overloaded
  • Ensure that equipment is only connected to a socket protected by a suitable RCD.
  • Ensure that sockets are in good condition, suitable for use outside if appropriate and in a location where they won’t be accessed or damaged by customers.
  • Remove equipment from its packaging before installation
  • Switch off the electrical supply before connecting

During installation and when using the equipment:

  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions and retain for future reference
  • Ensure that equipment is installed in locations where it will not be damaged and away from flammable materials and decorations.
  • Check frequently for any damage to equipment and replace failed lamps as appropriate.
  • Always switch off before replacing lamps and use the correct replacement lamp
  • Keep equipment packaging for any future storage.  If equipment is stored ensure that it is not in damp or excessively hot conditions

Any permanent fixed installation of equipment that does not require sockets, and the installation of sockets should be undertaken and thereafter maintained by a competent electrician.

Further information on electrical safety can be obtained on the HSE website.

Licensing Standards annual premises inspection programme 2022-23

With the lifting of Coronavirus restrictions we will be contacting those premises to be inspected this year.  Through consultation with the licensee the inspection may be a physical visit; a virtual visit (where we link up with a premises via WhatsApp or other platforms); or a self-assessment (where the licensee completes the assessment, returns it to Licensing Standards and advice is provided as necessary).

The areas to be covered relate to the premises licence; personal licence; training of staff; alcohol authorisation; notices to be displayed; children and young person access; age verification; baby changing requirements; and minimum unit pricing.

Further advice on alcohol licensing can be found on our web page.

Personal Licences

Is your personal licence due for renewal or refresh?  Do you know? A quick check of the expiry date on the front of your licence will confirm the position.  A personal licence has a maximum tenure of 10 years and must be renewed prior to the 10 anniversary of issue otherwise the licence will be revoked.  In addition, a personal licence must be refreshed every 5 years or it will be revoked. We provide information on our Personal Licences and Training web page which includes a list of local accredited trainers.

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Previous Newsletters

We have alibrary of previous newsletters dating back to May 2018 providing information and advice on various topics connected to alcohol licensing


Any questions? You can contact licensing standards or the Licensing Board team for further information.


The Licensing Standards service does not provide legal advice or opinion and the above information should not be considered such.  Any legal advice or opinion on licensing matters should be obtained from a licensing solicitor.