For businesses that offer late-night refreshment, regulated entertainment and sell alcohol.

Apply and pay for a premises licence on GOV.UK

To provide late-night refreshment, regulated entertainment and sell alcohol in Portsmouth you need a licence from the council. You must be 18 or over to apply for a premises licence.

Any of the following people or establishments may apply for a premises licence:

  • someone who operates 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

The power to regulate and issue licences is contained in the Licensing Act 2003. Applicants should also have regard to Portsmouth’s Statement of Licensing Policy and the Statutory Guidance issued in accordance with Section 182 of the Act (available in the documents section below).

Application information

Applications must be in a specific format and be accompanied by the required fee. The application will consist of completion of 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).

An operating schedule includes 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 is for consumption on or of the premises or both
  • the steps proposed to be taken to promote the licensing objectives
  • any other required information

Applicants will be required to advertise their application in:

The applicant must also give notice of the application to any other relevant responsible authorities, for example the chief police officer or Fire and Rescue authority.

The council must grant the application if no objections are received.

The licence may be granted subject to conditions. A hearing must be held if any representations are made in respect of the application. If a hearing is held the licence can be granted, or granted subject to additional conditions.

Licensable activities listed in the application can be excluded or the application can be rejected.

The council will serve a notice of its decision on the applicant, any person who has made relevant representations (for example representations 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.

How to apply and application processing times

To apply for a Premises Licence:

  • download and complete the relevant forms below and return to us with the required supporting documents to Portsmouth City Council
    Licensing Office, Civic Offices, Guildhall Square, Portsmouth, Hants, PO1 2AL

Application processing times

Applications should be processed in the times listed below. If you have not heard from us within a reasonable time please email or phone 023 9283 4607.

  • premises licence – 56 days
  • variation of premises licence – 56 days
  • provisional statement – 56 days
  • club premises certificate – 56 days
  • variation of club premises certificate – 56 days
  • minor variation to a premises licence or club certificate – 15 days
  • need for designated premises supervisor to be disapplied – 56 days
  • vary a premises licence to specify a designated premises supervisor – 42 days
  • transfer a premises licence – 42 days
  • notification of interest in premises under section 178 – 14 days
  • interim authority notice – 16 days
  • consent to transfer – 42 days
  • consent to be designated premises supervisor – 42 days
  • change of name or address – 14 days
  • request to be removed as designated premises supervisor – 14 days
  • temporary event notice – 9 days

Tacit consent

Tacit consent applies to applications for a Premises Licence.

This means that you may act as though your application is granted if you do not hear from us by the end of the target completion period – which is a maximum of 56 days.

If you have not heard from the council within a reasonable period, please email us at or phone us on  023 9283 4073.

Redress and consumer complaints

If an application for a licence is refused or an applicant is aggrieved by the conditions imposed on the licence the applicant may appeal to the Magistrates’ court within 21 days of being given formal notice of the decision.

Equally, any other person or responsible authority aggrieved by the grant of a licence or any conditions imposed may also appeal to the Magistrates’ Court within the same time frame.

Other redress

The chief police officer for the police area where the premises are located 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 that they are of the opinion that the premises are associated with either serious crime or disorder or both. A hearing will be held and the licence holder and other persons 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, under a variation application could undermine crime prevention objectives. Such a notice must be given within 14 days of receiving notification of the application.

A person or responsible body may make representations in relation to a licence application or request the licensing body to review a licence.

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

A person 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.

Consumer complaint

Once a licence has been granted, a person or responsible authority may apply to the licensing authority to review the premises licence if they consider that any of the four licensing objectives are not being satisfactorily promoted. A hearing will be held by the licensing authority.

An applicant for the review of a licence can appeal to the Magistrates’ court within 21 days of notice of the decision.


Grant of premises licence

Application to vary Premises Licence

Application for a Minor Variation

To obtain a copy of the public notice, please contact Licensing by emailing or phoning 023 9283 4073.

Removal of requirement for DPS at Community Premises

Application to vary a premises licence to specify individual as a designated premises supervisor

Application to transfer premises licence

Interim Authority Notice

Fast track applications