Rules and regulations
To sell alcohol for comsumption on your premises you must have a licence. Following the 2003 Licensing Act, the licensing regime changed and the responsibility for issuing personal licences and premises licences rests with local authorities.
A pub must meet four licencing objectives: prevention of crime and disorder, protection of children, public safety, and the reduction of public nuisance. Designated premises supervisors are responsible for ensuring that the pub meets these criteria.
You must be over 18 years old, have no criminal record, prove that you are a ‘fit and proper’ person and understand your legal and social responsibilities.
Candidates are advised to hold a British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) National Licensee’s certificate.
Although this is not a guarantee of success, it will prepare you for the application. If you plan to develop the catering side, you will also need to contact the local environmental health department to ensure you meet their standards.
If you’re a newcomer to the industry you will also need training. The landlord will often run an induction course for people entering a lease. As well as covering the licence application, this will also introduce you to all the skills you need to run a business successfully, including legal skills; financial management; marketing; beer and cellar skills; and food hygiene. There are also training courses for experienced licensees.