Alcohol & Entertainment Licensing News – The End of 24-Hour Licensing?

Early Morning Restriction Orders will give Licensing Authorities the power to override the terms of Premises Licences, Club Premises Certificates and Temporary Event Notices (TENs) to prevent them from allowing the sale and supply of alcohol at anytime between 0300 hours and 0600 hours in the morning.The new Orders are part of the Government’s Crime & Security Act 2010 which received Royal Assent shortly before Parliament was dissolved for the General Election. The Act sets out the procedures to be followed when making an Order, and also provides for variations and exceptions to made to Orders once made.

An Early Morning Restriction Order may only be made if a Licensing Authority considers it necessary in order to promote the four licensing objectives.

An Order may apply only to certain days of the week (e.g. Friday and Saturday), may be restricted to just part of the Licensing Authority’s area (e.g. one street), and be for a limited or unlimited period.

A decision to consider making such an Order must be advertised, and local residents and Licensees who might be affected by the Order may make representations, along with any Responsible Authority. The representations must relate to the likely effect of the proposed Order on the licensing objectives. This may make it quite difficult for Licensees to make representations. It is highly likely that an early morning restriction will promote the licensing objectives (if only by making everyone go home!) and the trade will be left trying to argue that any Order would be a disproportionate way of dealing with any current negative impact on the licensing objectives.

It must be hoped by the trade that the new Secretary of State does not make the commencement order and that Early Morning Restriction Orders are kicked into the long grass. In the current political turmoil, who knows what will happen?

Rob Westwood-Payne
Associate Solicitor
Maitland Walker LLP

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