Licensing Act 1953



Licensing Act , 1953

(1 & 2 Eliz. 2) CHAPTER 46

An Act to consolidate certain enactments relating to justices' licences for the sale by retail of intoxicating liquor and to the registration of clubs and to matters connected therewith with corrections and improvements made under the Consolidation of Enactments (Procedure) Act, 1949.

[31st July 1953]

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

I The General Licensing System

Part I

The General Licensing System

Justices' licence

Justices' licence

S-1 Justices' licence.

1 Justices' licence.

(1) For the purposes of the Customs and Excise Act, 1952, and this Act, the expression ‘justices' licence’ means a licence granted by licensing justices under this Act.

(2) A justices' licence may be for the sale of intoxicating liquor for consumption either on or off the premises for which the licence is granted (in this Act referred to as a ‘justices' on-licence’), or for the sale of intoxicating liquor for consumption off the said premises only (in this Act referred to as a ‘justices' off-licence’).

(3) A justices' licence shall be in such form as the Secretary of State may prescribe, and may authorise the person to whom it is granted to take out as many excise licences as the justices' licence may specify.

Licensing justices

Licensing justices

S-2 Licensing justices and districts.

2 Licensing justices and districts.

(1) Each of the following areas shall be a licensing district for the purposes of this Act, that is to say, a borough having a separate commission of the peace, a county, exclusive of any such borough, not divided into petty sessional divisions and a petty sessional division of a county.

(2) For a county licensing district the licensing justices shall be a committee of the justices acting for the petty sessions area forming the district known as the ‘divisional licensing committee’.

(3) For a borough licensing district the licensing justices shall be a committee of the borough justices known as the ‘borough licensing committee’.

(4) Licensing committees shall be constituted, and their procedure shall be regulated, in accordance with Part I of the First Schedule to this Act.

S-3 General annual licensing meeting.

3 General annual licensing meeting.

3. For the purpose of granting justices' licences, the licensing justices for each licensing district shall every year hold a general annual licensing meeting in accordance with the provisions of Part I of the Second Schedule to this Act.

S-4 Power of licensing justices to grant licences.

4 Power of licensing justices to grant licences.

4. Subject to the provisions of this Act, licensing justices may at their general annual licensing meeting grant a justices' licence to any such person, not disqualified under this or any other Act for holding a justices' licence, as they think fit and proper:

Provided that the justices may grant a licence by way of transfer or special removal at transfer sessions as well as at their general annual licensing meeting.

New licence

New licence

S-5 Grant of new licence

5 Grant of new licence

(1) An applicant for a new justices' licence shall give the notices, and deposit the plans, required by Part I of the Third Schedule to this Act.

(2) Subject to sections fifty-nine and seventy-one of this Act, the grant of a new justices' licence by the licensing justices shall not be valid unless it is confirmed by the confirming authority.

S-6 Grant of new on-licence, Special provisions, Monopoly value.

6 Grant of new on-licence, Special provisions, Monopoly value.

(1) Subject to the provisions of the next following section, licensing justices shall attach to the grant of a new justices' on-licence such conditions as, having regard to proper provision for suitable premises and good management, they think best adapted for securing to the public any monopoly value that is represented by the difference between the value that the premises will in their opinion bear when licensed and the value of the premises unlicensed:

Provided that, in estimating the value as licensed premises of hotels and other premises where the profits are not wholly derived from the sale of intoxicating liquor, no increased value arising from profits not so derived shall be taken into consideration.

(2) The licensing justices may attach to the grant of a new justices' on-licence such conditions governing the tenure of the licence and any other matters as they think proper in the interests of the public:

Provided that no payment shall be required in pursuance of a condition attached under this subsection.

(3) Subject to section seventy-two of this Act, licensing justices shall not grant a new on-licence for premises unless the premises are in their opinion structurally adapted to the class of licence required.

(4) The licensing justices may, if they think fit, instead of granting a new justices' on-licence for twelve months as provided by section forty-five of this Act, grant it for any other term not exceeding seven years.

(5) Where under the last preceding subsection a licence is granted for a term other than twelve months, the licence shall not require renewal during the term, and any application for a regrant of the licence on the expiration of the term shall be treated as an application for a new justices' licence, and not as an application for the renewal of the licence.

(6) Payments made in pursuance of any condition attached to a licence under subsection (1) of this section shall be collected in the same way as the duties on local taxation licences within the meaning of the Local Government Act, 1888, and shall be paid into the Exchequer.

(7) Without prejudice to the provisions of this or any other Act enabling a justices' licence to be forfeited, a new justices' on-licence granted for a term other than twelve months under subsection (4) of this section may be forfeited—

(a ) by an order of a magistrates' court made on complaint, where the court is satisfied that a condition imposed under this section has not been complied with;

(b ) by order of any court by or before which the holder of the licence is convicted of any offence committed by him as such.

(8) A person aggrieved by an order of a magistrates' court under the last preceding subsection may appeal to a court of quarter sessions.

(9) On confirming the grant of a new justices' on-licence, the confirming authority may, with the consent of the licensing justices, vary any conditions attached to the grant of the licence under this section.

(10) This section, except subsection (3), does not apply to a new justices' on-licence for the sale of wine alone or sweets alone.

(11) On an application for the grant of a new justices' on-licence to which this section applies the justices shall hear on the question of the payments to be imposed under subsection (1) of this section any person authorised in that behalf by the Commissioners.

S-7 Monopoly value where current on-licence surrendered.

7 Monopoly value where current on-licence surrendered.

(1) The condition to be attached under subsection (1) of the last preceding section shall, where the requirements of the next following subsection are satisfied, provide for reducing the amount to be paid if, on or before the grant of an excise licence in pursuance of the new justices' licence, there is surrendered another justices' on-licence, being either—

(a ) a licence for the same premises as the new one, or a licence in suspense under this Act that was last in force for those premises, or

(b ) a licence for other premises in the same licensing district or the same licensing planning area, or the same area for which a committee is constituted under section sixty-eight of this Act, or a licence in suspense under this Act that was last in force for other premises there.

(2) The preceding subsection shall not apply unless—

(a ) the justices are satisfied that the surrender will not reduce the amount payable on some other grant, and

(b ) where the licence to be surrendered is a licence for, or last in force for, other premises than those for which the new licence is granted—

(i) the other premises are specified in the notice of application for the new licence, and

(ii) a copy of the notice of the application is served on any person, other than the applicant, who is the registered owner of the other premises or who is the holder of the licence to be surrendered, and

(iii) the justices are satisfied that no objection is made by any such person as aforesaid or by any other person whom they may determine to have the right to object.

(3) A copy of a notice, if served under the last preceding subsection by post, shall be served by registered post.

(4) The amount of the reduction to be provided for shall be the amount, or, if more than one licence is surrendered, aggregate amount, of the monopoly value given up by the surrender.

(5) The amount of the monopoly value given up by the surrender of a licence for, or last in force for, any premises shall be determined by the licensing justices for the district where the premises are or were; and—

(a ) an application to have the said amount determined may be made at the general annual licensing meeting or at a transfer sessions and may be made before the application for the new licence; and

(b ) where the two applications are made separately, then in the proceedings relating to the determination of the said amount any person authorised by the Commissioners shall have the like right to be heard as if the proceedings related to the grant of the new licence.

(6) Subject to the next following subsection, the said amount shall be that represented by the...

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