The Licensing Act 2003 ("the Act") came into effect on 24 November 2005 and brought about significant changes to the licensing of alcohol, entertainment, cinemas, theatres and late night refreshment. The changes are intended to simplify the previous licensing processes. One of the major changes is that Portsmouth City Council is the Licensing Authority for the sale and supply of alcohol in Portsmouth, which was previously undertaken by the Licensing Justices at the Magistrates’ Court.

Statement of Licensing Policy

Portsmouth City Council, as Licensing Authority, is required by the Act to prepare and publish a statement of its licensing policy every five years. Such a policy must be published before the authority carries out any function in respect of individual application made under the terms of the Act and during the five year period. The policy must be kept under review and the Licensing Authority may make any revisions to it as it considers appropriate. The policy document is the framework that the Council has set down for promoting the licensing objectives and will set out how the Council will consider and determine applications for licences in conjunction with the statutory guidance issued by the Secretary of State.Before the Licensing Authority determines its policy for any five year period, or if revising a policy within a period, it must consult the persons listed in section 5(3) of the Act.

These are:

The chief officer of police for the area

The fire and rescue authority for the area

Persons/bodies representative of local holders of premises licences

Persons/bodies representative of local holders of personal licences

Persons/bodies representative of businesses and residents in its area

Licensing Act 2003 - statement of licensing policy for 2017 - 2022

 A draft statement of licensing policy for the years 2017 - 2022 was considered and approved by The Council on 11 July 2017.  A Copy of the policy is available in the documents section below.

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