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Club Premises Certificate
This is a certificate that is issued to premises that are
operated as a club. Being a club means public access is restricted
and alcohol is supplied other than for profit. These clubs are
organisations where members have joined together for particular
social, sporting and political purposes. Some examples of these are
Labour, Conservative and Liberal Clubs, the Royal British Legion,
other ex-services clubs, working men’s clubs, miners welfare
institutions and social and sports clubs.
Clubs have traditionally not been licensed because sales of
alcohol do not technically take place. Alcohol sales are between
the members who own part of the alcohol stock. Money that passes
across the servery is merely a mechanism to preserve fairness
between members, where one may consume more than another. No
arrangements are made for any individual to receive any commission,
percentage or similar payment for the purchase of alcohol made on
behalf of the club at its expense.
To qualify for a Club Premises Certificate, the club must meet
- under the club rules, people may not be admitted to membership
or be admitted as candidates for membership to any privileges of
membership without an interval of at least two days between their
nomination or application for membership and their admission
- people becoming members without prior nomination or application
may not be admitted to the privileges of membership without an
interval of at least two days between their becoming members and
- the club is established and conducted in good faith
- the club has at least 25 members
- alcohol is not to be supplied to members on the premises
otherwise than by or on behalf of the club
- the purchase and supply of alcohol by the club is done by
members of the club who are over 18 years of age and are elected to
do so by the members.
Registered industrial and provident societies and friendly
societies will qualify if the alcohol is purchased for and supplied
by the club under the control of the members or a committee of
Factors which have a bearing upon whether or not a club is
deemed to be established and conducted in good faith are:
- any arrangements restricting the club's freedom to purchase of
- any provision in the rules or arrangements under which the
money or property of the club or any gain arising from the carrying
on of the club is or maybe applied otherwise than for the benefit
of the club as a whole or for charitable, benevolent or political
- the arrangements for giving members information about the
finances of the club
- the books of account and other records kept to ensure the
accuracy of that information
- the nature of the premises occupied by the club.
Qualifying clubs should not be confused with proprietary clubs,
which are clubs run commercially by individuals or businesses for
the purpose of profit. These require the normal Premises Licence.
The definition of profit for this purpose is that those responsible
for the club intended to make a profit. If they make a charge
simply to cover costs and accidentally make a small profit owing to
miscalculation, they need not worry. What matters is their
intention at the outset.
Hiring out part of the premises
Club members can hire the premises without too much difficulty
under the Club Premises Certificate.
If the premises are to be hired by non-members, the club must
apply for a Premises Licence rather than a Club Premises
Certificate. Please contact the Licensing Unit for further
information or seek legal advice.
Making an application
Apply for a New Club Premises Certificate
Apply for a Variation of Club Premises Certificate
Apply for a Minor Variation of Club Premises Certificate
Apply for a Notification of Club Rules
All applications are based on the four licensing objectives:
- the prevention of crime and disorder
- public safety
- the prevention of public nuisance
- the protection of children from harm.
What is defined as Premises and Land
Please make sure that the premises, land, temporary structure,
vessel, vehicles, train or aircraft have the necessary permission
to be used as licensed premises.
The use of any licensed places or premises is subject to
There are several key differences between licensing and planning
Licensing is concerned with the fitness of the operator and
detailed issues concerning the operation and management of the
premises that are not addressed by the planning process, which
relates to the use of the premises.
It will be expected in general that the grant or variation of
planning permission would be resolved before a licence application
is made. The licensing committee may refuse to grant a licence
following representations from the local planning authority if
- Activity sought to be licensed would amount to an unlawful use
of the premises
- Hours being sought exceed those authorised by any planning
It will be for the applicant to demonstrate any special
circumstances to justify a departure from this policy in the face
of representations from the local planning authority.
Please note that the information above is not legal advice.
Legislation and procedures may change over time and the advice
given is based on the information available at the current time. It
is not necessarily comprehensive and will be subject to revision in
the event of further government guidance and regulations. This
advice is not intended to be a definitive guide to or substitute
for the relevant law.
The council is happy to provide information but cannot give
advice on individual applications. Please seek legal and
For more information contact Licensing Unit by
telephone: Licensing Services - 01634 337107 or 337108 /
Enforcement - 01634 337112 or 337106 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Write to: Licensing Unit, Medway Council, Gun Wharf, Dock Road,
Chatham, Kent ME4 4TR