Highland Licensing Policy Statement agreed
A special meeting of the Highland Licensing Board took place yesterday (24 September) in Inverness to agree the terms of the Board’s Licensing Policy Statement for 2018-2023.
A draft Policy Statement went out to public consultation in June 2018, so, at the September meeting, the Board members were able to discuss the responses received.
They then agreed a number of changes and additions to the Board’s existing policy. These include:
- clarification of the early opening hours which may be allowed for on sales of alcohol at food-led premises, distilleries, breweries and specialist off sales premises, and the conditions under which these early hours may be granted;
- clarification of when extended on sales hours are likely to be granted at licensed premises for screened televised events;
- additional information requirements for occasional licence applications at premises for which a provisional (but as yet unconfirmed) premises licence is in place, to ensure that the premises are in a suitable and safe condition for the sale of alcohol;
- a requirement for staff training records to be made available on site to the Police and Licensing Standards Officers during licensed outdoor events, to facilitate compliance checking;
- additional guidance to voluntary organisations applying for occasional licences;
- a new policy allowing children aged 12 or above may be allowed unaccompanied access to family-friendly restaurants to buy food and soft drinks provided the premises provided certain controls are in place;
The Board Convener, Councillor Ian Cockburn, said: “I’d like to thank all those who took part in this consultation. We took on board many good suggestions made by them and this new Policy Statement will now inform the decisions of the Board over the next five years. I would particularly like to thank NHS Highland Directorate of Public Health, Police Scotland and the Highland Licensing Forum for their great work in bringing together the facts and evidence which the Board needs in order to even start a policy review process of this nature. Their assistance in this process is invaluable.”