Licensing Standards Newsletter October 2020

Introduction – structure of Newsletter

Priority will be given to ongoing information from Scottish Government and other sources in relation to roles and responsibilities in monitoring and suppressing Covid-19.  The Newsletter will continue to be published monthly but will be supplemented as necessary where new guidance or information becomes available.

Coronavirus – Scottish Government latest guidance

On 23rd October The Scottish Government produced Scotland’s Strategic Framework, which was ratified in the Scottish Parliament on 27th October.  This document sets out a strategic approach to suppress the virus to the lowest possible level and keep it there, while striving to return to a more normal life for as many people as possible.  It includes the well-publicised 5 tier protection levels. The new protection levels will come into force on Monday 2nd November at 6:00am and will be reviewed on a weekly basis each Tuesday.  A postcode finder will be available from Monday 2nd November.  Argyll and Bute Council area will initially adopt protection level 2. 

Licensees are reminded that food can only be offered where it is recorded as an allowable activity on the premises licence operating plan, otherwise a major variation application to the licensing board will be required.  For more information Contact Licensing Standards or Licensing Board team.

Scottish Government - Business Hardship Fund

The fund is administered by local authorities and more information in relation to the situation in Argyll and Bute can be found here,

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 3rd November 2020 at 5:00pm.

Environmental Health – Local Guidance

With the easing of lockdown, there has been a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases and a number of outbreaks where there have been links to commercial premises.  It is important to recognise that rural areas are not immune and within Argyll and Bute we have had positive Covid-19 cases and a number of outbreaks.

Therefore, there is a potential that your premises may be linked to a case or outbreak because the Covid-19 case has visited your premises; or there are close contacts who work within your business; or there may have been a failure in the business COVID-19 measures. This highlights the need for everyone to be extra vigilant in ensuring that your COVID-19 measures are in place and are constantly reviewed and updated. In managing cases and outbreaks, the importance of being able to access accurate customer details and information from business is critical, so please assure yourself that your own systems are robust and remember –

Test & Protect - this is a mandatory requirement – see guidance;

Test & Protect - encourage staff and customers to download the Protect Scotland App;

Face Coverings - public facing, front of house staff, and customers (when not eating or drinking within premises) are required to wear face coverings unless they meet the specific exemptions.

Further advice can be obtained from our Environmental Health team on 01546-605519 or by e-mailing

Coronavirus – other guidance

Food Standards Scotland risk assessment tool

What you can and cannot do   

FACTS [You Tube video]

Face coverings mandatory in workplace communal areas

Coronavirus Job Support Scheme expanded

Argyll and Bute Council assistance

Strategic Events and Festivals Fund Round Three

Round three of Argyll and Bute Council’s Strategic Events and Festivals Fund opens for applications at midday on 22 October 2020. The fund is open to events and festivals that are of strategic importance to the area and that will take place between April 2021 and March 2022.

Applications to the fund close at midday 7th December 2020.  More information here.

Online Personal Licence Training

Highfield Training are providing their Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence holder Training courses online and are offering examination using remote invigilation.  All that is required is a smartphone, a laptop with a camera and photographic identification. The online course is ideal for those with basic computing skills wanting to apply for a Personal Licence or to refresh or renew their existing Personal Licence.  More information, including contact details, here.  

Three local trainers have advised that they too are providing online training – Christine Roberts at; Lynn Nicholson at, and Morag Beattie at 

Update to Scottish Certificate For Personal Licence Holder Qualification – 1 December 2020

The Scottish Government has announced the new updated Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence Holders (SCPLH) and Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence Holders Refresher (SCPLHR) qualifications which will be available from accredited Awarding Bodies from 1 December 2020.   

Further details can be found here, including a downloadable syllabus.

Other local information 

Licensing Board Meetings Dates 2020

Personal Licence Refresher Training and Mandatory 10 Year Renewals

Personal licence accredited trainers

Contact Licensing Standards and Licensing Board team

Legal Advice

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.