All 7 Mandatory Licensing Conditions Now Apply!

With heavy penalties in place for any breach of conditions, we are urging all our clients the review their procedures and ensure their business complies with all the mandatory conditions, as well as any specific conditions which may apply to their individual premises licence.

On the 1st October 2010 the last two of five new mandatory conditions came into force in England and Wales under the Licensing Act 2003 (Mandatory Licensing Conditions) Order 2010.

We have explored these in some depth in previous news blogs, but we thought a quick reminder would be useful.

A mandatory condition is one which applies to every premises licence in England and Wales; these now number seven in total:

  1. No sale or supply of alcohol can be made without an appointed Designated Premises Supervisor (DPS). 
  2. Every sale or supply of alcohol must be made or authorised by a Personal Licence Holder. 
  3. Free potable tap water must be provided for customers. (applies to all premises where alcohol is served for consumption on the premises) Click for further details >>
  4. No alcohol may be dispensed directly into the mouth of another person. Click for further details >>
  5. The responsible person must ensure that staff do not carry out, arrange or participate in any irresponsible promotions. For further details see below or Click Here >>
  6. You must have an Age Verification Policy in place. For further details see below or Click Here >>
  7. The provision of smaller measures must be offered and a notice of their availability be given. (applies to all premises where alcohol is served for consumption on the premises) For further details see below or Click Here >>

The penalty if you carry out a licensable activity in breach of any of the mandatory conditions is the same as that for an unauthorised licensable activity; a maximum of 6 months imprisonment and / or £20,000 fine. 

The two latest mandatory conditions which applied as of last week (1st October) seem still to be unfamiliar to many. I have visited a number of licensed premises in the last week which are still not in compliance and as such we have made some helpful information and documents available through our website to help our clients catch up.


Age Verification Policy

Every premises licence holder must ensure that an ‘age verification policy’ applies to the premises in relation to the sale or supply of alcohol.

The ‘age verification policy’ will dictate the minimum age at which a person can purchase alcohol (this must be 18 years of age or above) and requires any person who appears to be under the specified age to produce a valid identification document which shows their date of birth.

We recommend that your age verification policy is applied alongside an ‘Age Restricted Products Sales Policy’. We have made copies of all these policies available for free download on our website’s Useful Resources & Downloads Page


Smaller Measures

Alcoholic drinks must be available for purchase in small single size measures:

  • Still Wine in 125ml
  • Spirits (Gin, Whisky, Vodka, Rum) in either 25ml or 35ml
  • Beer & Cider in half pints

You not only have a duty to make these drinks available in these sizes, but to give notice that they are. This can reasonably be done through your price lists and other existing marketing tools; good practice suggests you should also place a sign at point of sale (bar, till etc.).

Smaller sizes do not apply to sealed containers and so this condition does not apply for premises where only off-sales take place.


Irresponsible Promotions

As the most difficult of the new mandatory condition to interpret, I thought I would take the opportunity to review the condition surrounding ‘irresponsible promotions’ again.

An ‘irresponsible promotion’ is one which undermines any of the licensing objectives and encourages people to drink more (on the premises) than they might ordinarily do and in a manner which does not promote the licensing objectives.

The guidance sets out a number of examples, but this is far from a prescribed list and it specifically mentions that ‘substantially similar’ promotions would also fall under this condition:

  • Drinking Games – which require or encourage individuals to drink a quantity of alcohol (or as much as possible) within a time limit.
  • Large quantities of Alcohol for Free or a Fixed Price – this prevents promotions such as a fixed entry price allowing ‘all you can drink’.  However this also covers unlimited or unspecified quantities of alcohol free or for a fixed price being offered to a particular group of people defined by a particular characteristic (which makes them more vulnerable or more likely to be involved in crime and disorder as a result of the consumption of alcohol).
  • Prizes and Rewards – The sale, supply or provision of free or discounted alcohol or any other item as a prize to encourage or reward the purchase and consumption of alcohol over a period of 24 hours or less.
  • Sporting Events – providing free or discounted alcohol in relation to a sporting event shown on the premises which depended on the outcome of a race, match or other event.
  • Posters & Flyers – sale of alcohol in connection with posters or flyers which are considered to condone, encourage or glamorise anti-social behaviour or refer to the effects of drunkenness in any favourable manner. 

The guidance suggests that any promotion which targets more ‘vulnerable’ sections of the community will be deemed to be ‘irresponsible’. The vulnerable sections of the community are identified in the guidance to include; students, women and people under 25 years of age.


In order to protect your business you should ensure that your staff are trained in all of the mandatory conditions and that they act within the guidelines.


Temporary Events Notices (TEN)

While much was made about the mandatory conditions, a small but significant change came into force regarding TEN’s on the 1st October 2010.

The change revolves around the time-frame anyone giving a notice must provide the police with. This has changed from 48 hours to 2 working days.

For further information on any of these topics please do not hesitate to Contact Us.

At Beyond The Blue Training & Consultancy we deliver a number of different courses and services, which include;

For more information on any of our services, please call us on 0845 602 55 95 or Contact Us.

Source – Beyond The Blue Training & Consultancy 

Date – 10th October 2010

Submitted by – Peter Mayhew