Licensing Standards Newsletter - December 2015

Welcome and useful contacts

Welcome to our December Newsletter which is published a little earlier this month. 

As usual,  the newsletter is free and if you want to receive it direct to your inbox, visit out homepage and select 'licensing newsletter' from the box on the right, or access it from our Licensing Standards page on the Council website.  

ContactEric Dearie or Raymond Park for licensing standards advice and information, or  the Licensing Board Team for information on licensing applications; applying for a licence or for an update on your licensing application.

November Newsletter

Our apologies for the late publication of the November Newsletter, there were technical problems outwith our control.  We have included a link to all our previous newsletters should you want another look.

Licence Conditions

We continue our look at the national mandatory licence conditions attached to premises licences and what they mean in practical terms to the running of licensed premises.  There are currently 13 conditions and all licensed premises have to abide by them.  In addition, a licensing board can set local licensing conditions to promote safety and assist in maintaining the 5 licensing objectives (e.g. stewarding; patron curfews and music curfews, etc.) 

This month we will look at Condition 6B: “Pricing of Alcohol”

Condition 6B

Introduced by the Alcohol Etc. (Scotland) Act 2010 and referring only to off sales premises –

A package containing two or more alcohol products (whether of the same or different kind) may only be sold on the premises at a price equal to or greater than the sum of the prices at which each alcoholic product is for sale on the premises.” 

This condition only has effect where each alcoholic product is available separately on the premises.

What this means in practical terms is if you sell a single alcoholic product (e.g. can of beer) and you also sell multipacks, the price of the multipack must not be less than the multiple of the single product (e.g. 1 x can = £1.00 then a 4 x can multipack = not less than £4.00, etc.).  If you sell singles only or multipacks only then this condition has no effect.

Licensing Board Hearings Dates - 2016

The dates of The Argyll and Bute Licensing Board hearings in 2016 have been published on the council website.The next meeting of the licensing board is18th February 2016, with the last lodging date for applications being 7th January 2016.

National PubWatch Newsletter – December 2015

This national newsletter provides excellent information on the PubWatch scheme with ongoing news and can be accessed here.

“Dial-a-Drink” services

The Evening Times newspaper has reported that dial-a-drink services in Glasgow are breaking the law by delivering alcohol to children and to properties throughout the night. Orders are made via social media but it is an offence to deliver alcohol between midnight and 6am. 

We would like to reiterate to Argyll and Bute licensees the law in relation to off sales transactions.  The Evening Times article can be viewed here.  

Festive Season Trading – are you up for it?

The Festive Season is well and truly with us and you may already be catering for large numbers of customers either individually or through office parties, etc.  We hope this period will be financially successful for the trade and that your customers, and your staff, enjoy themselves in a safe and inviting atmosphere.  Here are 10 tips to assist in making this Festive Season special:

  1. Ensure staff, especially part-time or casual staff, are fully trained and are explicitly informed of their responsibilities.
  2. If possible have a personal licence holder on duty at all times.
  3. If you’re expecting large numbers consider additional stewarding both on the door and within your premises.
  4. If you’re expecting large numbers consider advising the police beforehand so they are prepared to deal with the numbers on the street at the terminal hour.
  5. Maintain a “clean” event – clear glasses, bottles and tables regularly to reduce the possibilty of such items being used as weapons.  Consider using plastic or toughened glasses.
  6. Monitor your customers’ drinking and be prepared to take early action to reduce drunkenness and violence. 
  7. Be consistent in approach if refusing service.
  8. Monitor smokers to reduce large numbers congregating outside your premises.
  9. At the end of the evening clearly call last orders.  Consider bringing up the lighting and offer soft drinks and teas/coffees to encourage customers to move on at the end of licensed hours.

10.  Have a dispersal policy that staff are aware of which will quickly and safely vacate customers from the premises at the end of the night.

Answering your questions

Q. “I would like some information on ‘e-cigarettes’.  What are they, and is there a ban on using them in licensed premises?”

A. Electronic cigarettes (also known as e-cigarettes, nicotine delivery devices or nicotine vaping products) are battery-powered devices that heat a liquid often containing nicotine and flavourings into an inhalable form.  Unlike conventional cigarettes there is currently no ban in Scotland on the use of e-cigarettes indoors.  Therefore, each licensee must decide whether the use of such devices is acceptable on their premises.

The Health (Tobacco, Nicotine Etc. and Care) (Scotland) Bill is being considered by the Scottish Parliament and will introduce:

  • A ban on selling e-cigarettes to under-18s, along with supporting measures to ban proxy sales and unstaffed vending machines
  • A register for retailers selling electronic cigarettes
  • Powers for Scottish Ministers to introduce restrictions on e-cigarette advertising

Thank you to ASH Scotland for providing the above information.

Q. “I had my personal licence revoked because I failed to complete refresher training process within the required timescale.  What do I do now to get my licence back?”

A. Section 60 of the Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2015 updated the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 in removing the requirement to wait 5 years before applying for a new personal licence after a licence has been revoked.  So you can apply immediately for a new personal licence.  You should now sit the full Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence Holders (SCPLH) course (not a refresher course) and submit your pass certificate as part of an application to the licensing board.  Find further information on applying for a personal licence,here you can apply online or print off a paper application form.

Personal licence refresher training and accredited trainers

The refreshing of personal licences is an ongoing process and you can find information on refresher training and local accredited trainers who offer full and refresher personal licence training courses.

Sheila Baird, Environmental Consultancy and Training (ENCAT) at encat.com has advised us that EnCaT is offering personal licence refresher courses in early 2016 on Islay on 12th February; in Lochgilphead on 23rd  March and in Oban on 27th April.

That’s it for now

Do you need more information?  Or maybe you would like a licensing topic included in the next edition - contact us.

Legal Advice

Licensing standards 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.