Thursday, February 03, 2005

A license to ?

Interesting meeting with licensing chap from Test Valley Borough Council talking about the implications of the new changes.

I wasn't heavily involved with the bill but did take up a large number of queries/concerns etc with ministers at the time so it was interesting to learn what the perceived problems were from another angle. The view seemed to be that the law was badly drafted and the likelihood that precedents would be set by referring to early legal rulings.

The way it will work is that all licences have to be renewed by a date in August and if they are merely replacements then there will be a "rubber stamping". If there are any changes then these will have to be considered by the council but theoretically pubs will be able to apply for a range of extended licensing hours. The snag is that each organisation will be applying separately and it will be difficult to get an overall picture of what the effect will be in August - shame that there is no way of co-ordinating all of this.