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Premises licence

The Licensing Act 2003 requires Middlesbrough Council to produce a licensing policy. This policy sets out how the council expects the licensing objectives, defined by the Act, to be promoted in the local area, and provides guidance on matters which will normally be taken into account when making decisions on licensing applications.

Registration of entertainment premises


You'll need a premises licence from the council if your business carries on any of the following activities:

  • The sale by retail of alcohol
  • The supply of alcohol by a club
  • The provision of regulated entertainment in the presence of an audience i.e.
    • A performance of a play
    • A screening of a film
    • An indoor sporting event, boxing or wrestling entertainment
    • Performance of live music
    • Playing of recorded music, performance of a dance
    • Entertainment of a similar description to the performance of live music, the playing of recorded sound and the performance of dance
    • The provision of late night refreshment i.e. the provision of hot food or drink to members of the public between 11pm and 5am

Any of the following may apply for a premises licence:

  • anyone who carries on a business in the premises to which the application relates
  • a recognised club
  • a charity
  • a health service body
  • a person who is registered under the Care Standards Act 2000 in relation to an independent hospital
  • a chief police officer of a force in England and Wales
  • anyone discharging a statutory or function under Her Majesty's prerogative
  • a person from an educational institute
  • any other permitted person

Applicants cannot be under 18 years of age.

If the premises is located in Middlesbrough, your application should be sent to Middlesbrough Council.

Applications must be in a specific format and be accompanied by the required fee. Current fees can be obtained from the guidance section.

Leaflets are available in the guidance section to assist applicants when submitting applications and to assist responsible authorities or interested parties when considering making a review application. However, you should also consult your own legal adviser for legal advice.

An operating schedule, a plan of the premises and a form of consent from the premises supervisor (for applications where the sale of alcohol will be a licensable activity) are required.

An operating schedule will include details of:

  • the licensable activities
  • the times when the activities will take place
  • any other times when the premises will be open to the public
  • in the case of applicants who wish to have a limited licence, the period the licence is required for
  • information in respect of the premises supervisor
  • whether any alcohol that is to be sold will be for consumption on the premises, off the premises, or both
  • the steps proposed to be taken to promote the licensing objectives
  • any other required information

Applicants are required to advertise their application and to give notice of the application to other responsible authorities. Contact details of these authorities can be obtained from the guidance section.

The licensing authority must grant the application, following the statutory consultation period, if no representations are received. A hearing must be held within 28 days after the end of the consultation period if any representations are made in respect of the application. If a hearing is held, the licence can be granted, granted subject to additional conditions, certain licensable activities listed in the application can be excluded, or the application can be rejected.

The licensing authority will serve a notice of its decision on the applicant, any person who has made relevant representations (i.e. representations that were not deemed frivolous or vexatious), and the chief of police.

Applications can also be made to vary or transfer a licence. A hearing may have to be held if representations are made or conditions relating to a transfer are not met.

Other applications that can be made are applications for an interim authority notice following the death, incapacity or insolvency of a licence holder or review applications.

Read more about the relevant legislation.

What happens next?


You'll be able to go ahead with the licensable activities if you've not heard from Middlesbrough Council by the end of the target completion period.

Please note that a full copy of any representation received (including personal details) will be sent to the applicant and will be a public document at any hearing of the matter. Reports to the Licensing Committee and accompanying documentation will be published on this website.

Redress information


Please contact the council in the first instance.

If an application for a licence is refused, the applicant can appeal. Appeals are made to a Magistrates' court within 21 days of notice of the decision.

If an application is made by the chief police officer, as detailed below, and interim steps are taken by the licensing authority, you may make representations. A hearing must be held within 48 hours of your representations.

A licence holder may appeal against any conditions attached to a licence, a decision to reject a variation application, a decision to reject a transfer application, or a decision to exclude an activity, or person as premises supervisor.

Appeals are made to a Magistrates' court within 21 days of notice of the decision.

The chief police officer for the police area can apply to the licensing authority for a review of the licence if the premises are licensed to sell alcohol by retail, and a senior officer has given a certificate stating that they are of the opinion that the premises are associated with serious crime, or disorder, or both. A hearing will be held, and the licence holder and other interested parties may make representations.

A chief police officer can give a notice to the licensing authority if they believe that the transfer of a licence to another person could undermine crime prevention objectives. Such a notice must be given within 14 days of receiving notification of the application.

An interested party or responsible body may make representations in relation to a licence application or request the licensing body to review a licence.

An interested party or relevant authority who made relevant representations may appeal against the granting of a licence or against any condition, variation, licensable activity or premises supervisor decisions.

Appeals are made to a Magistrates' court within 21 days of notice of the decision.

Customer complaint


An interested party or responsible authority may apply to the licensing authority to review the premises licence. A hearing will be held by the licensing authority.

Appeals are made to a Magistrates' court within 21 days of notice of the decision.



For more information about alcohol and entertainment licensing, contact the Licensing team by calling 01642 728011 or emailing licensing@middlesbrough.gov.uk.