If you’re holding an outdoor wedding, there’s a lot to bear in mind, but one thing which often slips people’s mind is whether or not they’ll need an alcohol licence.
It’s something which isn’t immediately clear to a layman, so we’re going to try and shed some light on the topic.
The last thing you want is for everything to be going perfectly, the sun to come out and then have the big day ruined by being shut down by the council, all because you didn’t take the simple steps to get a licence.
So, do you need one? Well, it depends on how generous you’re feeling! If you’re selling alcohol at the event, either at a cash bar or as part of a ticket price, then yes, you will need an alcohol licence.
However, if you’re having a free bar and giving alcohol away for free, then you won’t need one.
But if you do require a licence, don’t worry, because you can easily acquire a Temporary Event Notice under the Licensing Act 2003.
Obtaining a licence isn’t too difficult. You simply need to head to the website of your local borough or district council, which you’ll be able to find using this tool.
Then you’ll need to find a Temporary Event Notice application form, download it and fill it in (they’re nothing too tricky, just some details about your event).
Then you just need to send the form back to the council along with a £21 fee and wait for them to confirm that it has been approved.
You’ll also need to send the police a copy of the Temporary Event Notice, but if you’re applying online the council will do this for you.
Licences are usually granted, but it could be denied if the authorities think that it could lead to crime and disorder, cause a public nuisance, be a threat to public safety or put children at risk of harm.
It’s important that you get all of this done in plenty of time. Even though it’s a straightforward process, it can take a while.
You have to have your application submitted at least ten days before the event, but we’d recommend doing it even earlier.
If you’d rather not have to submit the form yourself, you can enlist the help of a licensing service to process it for you.
According to Hospitality Training Solutions, the UK’s leading providers of personal alcohol licence courses: “It can feel like there are a million and one things to get sorted in time for your wedding and an alcohol licence is often one of the things which slips through the cracks.
“We help to sort out Temporary Event Notices so that you don’t have to, meaning one less thing to worry about ahead of the big day.”
Once you’ve received your Temporary Event Notice, it needs to be displayed in a safe place at the event.
People often forget about alcohol licences, but it’s really important you don’t! If you sell alcohol without one, you could be fined or even face prosecution and a six-month jail sentence!