Licensing Standards Monthly Newsletter - November 2022

Covid Sense Signage Scheme

Covid rules and restrictions have been lifted in Scotland, but the virus has not gone away. Use the Covid Sense Signage Scheme to help protect yourself and others.

Licensing Board Festive Hours Policy 2022

As in previous years the licensing board has set the period during which extended hours will be considered.  Please be aware that Extended Hours applications must be with the Board at least 35 days prior to the date on which the extended hours event is being held. This timescale is to allow for statutory reports the Board must consider in determining each application. 

The 35 day deadline for Christmas Festivities is 21st November and 28th November for New Year festivities.

Licensing policy review guide

Licensing boards are legally required to publish statements of licensing policy at least once every five years. These documents are intended to provide local stakeholders with an indication of how the boards will manage the licensed premises in their area, outlining their approach to matters such as opening hours and children’s access. Alcohol Focus Scotland has published a new Licensing Policy Review Guide to assist licensing boards with this task.

Accredited Trainers

Accredited Trainers work throughout Argyll and Bute and provide personal licence and staff training. Training is also provided online by some of the traders – check link.

New fireworks law

New powers making it a criminal offence for anyone to supply fireworks to people under the age of 18 came into effect on Monday 10th October. The Fireworks and Pyrotechnic Articles (Scotland) Act 2022, passed by the Scottish Parliament on June 29th builds on steps taken last year restricting the times fireworks can be used, when they can be bought, and the quantity. Attacks on emergency workers using fireworks or pyrotechnics will become aggravating factors that can be taken into account when courts sentence offenders.

Retailers want to see tougher laws on tobacco sales

More than half (54%) of shopkeepers think the age for buying tobacco should be raised from 18 to 21, according to a new report. The charity Action on Smoking and Health (Ash) commissioned a survey of 961 small tobacco retailers across the UK. Eight out of 10 (81%) also agreed there should be a mandatory licence scheme for selling tobacco to prevent sales to children, illegal sales, and to give local authorities more power. (From Legal Matters Scotland).

Keeping tips from workers could be illegal

Employers not paying workers their tips in their entirety, without deductions, may soon become illegal. A new bill backed by the Government would also introduce an obligation to allocate tips fairly among workers. In 2021, the Government said 80% of all tipping now happened by card and suggested this had made it easier for businesses to keep the funds. Ministers first announced plans to ensure all tips go to workers in 2018, but these were never passed into law. A Government official said the Employment (Allocation of Tips) Bill “will ensure that all tips go to staff by making it unlawful to hold back service charges from employees." They added: “More than two million UK workers will benefit, helping ease pressures caused by increases in the cost of living." Trade union Unite said it would reserve judgement until "potential loopholes" in the bill were closed.  (From Legal Matters Scotland).

Local News – from Argyll and Bute Council          

Wondering about gifts to give this Christmas? Why not help keep spending local and give an Argyll and Bute gift card.  If you’re a local business, why not find out about joining – it’s free for your business to participate and receive payments through the card. 

Strategic Events & Festivals Fund - are you organising events due to take place between 1 April 2023 and 31 March 2024? The council’s Strategic Events and Festivals Fund is now open. More details including how to apply are available on the council website.

Short term lets licences: to help new businesses get going we are prioritising your licence applications. Existing short term let businesses are asked to apply for their licence between January and the end of March 2023.

Council decisions: you can watch key council decision-making meetings live, or at a time that suits you, via our website. 

Avoiding scammers: Trading Standards Scotland has tips on shopping safely on-line

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Previous Newsletters

We have a library of previous newsletters 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.