From July to September 2010, the Home Office conducted a public consultation exercise on the rebalancing of the Licensing Act having regard to the Government’s plans to overhaul the current licensing regime including giving more power to Licensing Authorities and the Police. The consultation sought advice from representatives from a wide range of sectors including the on trade, off trade, police, health bodies and interested organisations. It asked for opinions on how to help local authorities and the police deal with alcohol-related crime and disorder, while also promoting responsible business.

The Government (Home Office) have now published the government response to the ‘Rebalancing the Licensing Act’ consultation, as well as the full consultation analysis (part one and part two).

To assist in considering the Government response please view the original consultation and accompanying documents.

The proposals included:

  • overhauling the Licensing Act to give local authorities and the police much stronger powers to remove licences from, or refuse to grant licences to premises that are causing problems
  • allowing councils and the police to permanently shut down any shop or bar that is repeatedly selling alcohol to children
  • doubling the maximum fine for those caught selling alcohol to minors to £20,000
  • allowing local councils to charge more for late-night licences, which will help pay for additional policing

The changes proposed by the Government are intended to be incorporated within the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Bill – details of which are available on the Licensing home page.