Accessibility Skip to main content

Premises licence

If you wish to sell alcohol, your premises must be licensed by South Ayrshire Council.

Applications are made to South Ayrshire Council local licensing board and you must be 18 years or older to make the application. The application must include a description of the premises, an operating plan, a layout plan of the premises, and certificates for planning, building standards and, if relevant, food hygiene.

An operating plan will detail the following:

  • the activities to be carried out on the premises
  • the times when alcohol will be sold
  • whether alcohol is to be sold for consumption on or off the premises or both
  • times when any activities other than the sale of alcohol will be carried out
  • where alcohol is to be sold on the premises a statement detailing whether children or young people will be allow on the premises and if so details of when they can be present, times and parts of the premises they can enter
  • the capacity of the premises
  • specific information about the premises manager
  • any other information required

Your premises will also require a personal licence holder to sell and authorise the sale of alcohol.

Conditions will be attached to a licence.

How to apply

The links below take you to the GOV.UK website which processes these applications on behalf of South Ayrshire Council.

What happens next?

The licensing board will give notice of the application, together with a copy of it, to the following:

  • every person who has a notifiable interest in the land neighbouring the premises
  • any Community Council for the area the premises is situated
  • the Council for the area the premises is situated, unless the Council are the applicant
  • the chief constable for the area
  • South Ayrshire Council

The chief constable must give a notice that the applicant or connected people have not been convicted a relevant offence and detailing any convictions and a report detailing all cases of antisocial behaviour that have taken place on or around the premises and all complaints and other representations concerning antisocial behaviour within the previous year.

A Licensing Board must consider any notices it receives relating to representations or objections and serve a copy of the notice on the applicant.

A hearing must be held to determine the application. If any of the grounds for refusal apply the application must be refused. The following are grounds for refusal:

  • the premises are excluded premises
  • there are no exceptional circumstances for allowing the sale of alcohol over a 24 hour period or if the application requests the sale of alcohol off the premises before 10.00, after 22.00 or both
  • the applicant has had another application refused within the last 12 months
  • the granting of the application would not be consistent with one or more of the licensing objectives
  • considering the nature of the activities proposed, the location, character and condition of the premises and the types of people likely to visit the premises it is decided that the premises are unsuitable for selling alcohol
  • that if the application was granted there would be too many licensed premises in the vicinity

If it is felt that an application would be allowed with a modification and the applicant accepts the modification, the licence must be granted.

If the application is refused the Licensing Board must give reasons for the refusal.

If an applicant or a connected person is convicted of an offence after the date the application was submitted but before it is determined they must notify the Licensing Board. If such information is received a Licensing Board must suspend the application and give notice to the chief constable of the conviction. The chief constable must respond by way of a notice within 21 days as to whether the conviction can be confirmed and if so if it is a relevant or foreign offence.

Applications to vary a licence must be made to the Licensing Board and must be accompanied by the licence or if this is not possible with a statement saying why the licence cannot be produced. If the variation is minor the application must be allowed. For any other application a hearing must be held.

If any of the grounds for refusal apply, the application must be refused. The grounds for refusal are the same as above except that an application for a variation cannot be allowed if a previous application has been made and rejected within the previous 12 months.

Applications to transfer the licence to another person (the transferee) must be accompanied by the licence or if this is not possible with a statement saying why the licence cannot be produced. A Licensing Board will give notice of such an application to the chief constable who must respond within 21 days with a notice stating whether the transferee has been convicted of a relevant or foreign offence.

A person other than the premises licence holder can apply to have the licence transferred if the licence holder dies or becomes incapacitated, becomes insolvent, is dissolved or the premises is transferred to another person. The same process will apply to such an application. Applications to vary licences can be made at the same time.

It is in the public interest that the South Ayrshire Council must process your application before it can be granted. We would expect to process your application within 183 calendar days or 131 working days. If you have not heard from us within a reasonable period, please contact us.

What if I have been refused approval?

Please contact South Ayrshire Council using the contact details below in the first instance.

Appeals against the refusal of an application must be made to the local sheriff. Appeals can only be made under one of the following grounds:

  • the Licensing Board erred in law
  • the decision was based on incorrect material facts
  • the Licensing Board acted contrary to natural justice
  • the Licensing Board used their discretion in an unreasonable manner
  • if any of the following steps were taken and are disproportionate, that is that at a review hearing of a premises licence the licence was suspended, varied or revoked or the licence holder was given a written warning or that a personal licence was revoked, suspended or endorsed

Consumer complaints

We would always advise that in the event of a complaint the first contact is made with the service provider by you - preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked, if you are located in the UK, Consumer Direct will give you advice or you can contact us directly. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Any person may apply to the Licensing Board for a review of the licence. Grounds for review are that one or more of the conditions have been breached or for any other ground relevant to the licensing objectives. A hearing must be held in relation to the application.

Other complaints

If you wish to complain about a licence holder then please use the contact details below.

If felt necessary a chief constable can recommend that the application is refused on the grounds that any criminal conviction could be cause to refuse the application for the purposes of crime prevention objectives. This must be served by way of a notice within 21 days of receiving notice from the Licensing Authority. A chief constable can only object if they suspect that the applicant or any connected person may be involved in serious organised crime.

Any person may object to an application or make representations in support of an application, modifications to application or conditions to be added to a licence, by way of a notice to the Licensing Board.

Any person may apply to the Licensing Board for a review of the licence. Grounds for review are that one or more of the conditions have been breached or for any other ground relevant to the licensing objectives. A hearing must be held in relation to the application.

Who to contact

Licensing Services
South Ayrshire Council
County Buildings
Wellington Square
Ayr KA7 1DR
Tel: 01292 617682

Trade Associations

Was this page helpful?  Yes  No

Thank you for your feedback!

We're sorry about that. Why wasn't it helpful?
No response is given so please do not include contact information.

Last updated: 15 September 2015

Weekly newsletter

Follow us