Licensing Act 2003 Statement of Licensing Policy Review

Closed 30 Apr 2023

Opened 6 Mar 2023


We want to hear your opinions on our proposed Statement of Licensing Policy issued under the Licensing Act 2003

The Council is updating its licensing policy, which sets out how we regulate and licence businesses that sell or supply alcohol, provide entertainment or late-night refreshment in the borough and we want you to have your say. 

The draft Statement of Licensing policy sets out the way the Council proposes to carry out its licensing responsibilities, such as considering licence applications from businesses.

We are now seeking your views on the draft proposed Statement of Licensing Policy 2023-2028. 

The policy sets out how the Council will meet the four licensing objectives under the Licensing Act, which are:

  • the prevention of crime and disorder
  • public safety
  • the prevention of public nuisance
  • the protection of children from harm

The Council will use the policy to make decisions about licence applications from businesses in the borough that wish to:

  • sell or supply alcohol 
  • provide regulated entertainment 
  • sell hot food or drink between 11pm and 5am (late night refreshment)

Proposed changes to the policy

The draft policy can be found here: Draft Statement of Licensing Policy

There are three main changes proposed which are summarised below:

Cumulative Impact Assessment ‘Cumulative impact’ is the potential impact on the promotion of the licensing objectives of a significant number of licensed premises concentrated in one area. The effect of adopting a special policy makes applying for a licence more rigorous but can also have the effect of discouraging new businesses. 

Sutton introduced a Special Policy on Cumulative Impact in 2014 and in the years since the Borough has changed. The offer has broadened in recent years from a focus on late night clubs and drinking establishments to a much more diverse all day social offering.

Recorded incidents of crime in Sutton are one of the lowest in London. Whilst reports of antisocial behaviour form a large percentage of those criminal incidents, the number of reported occurrences of antisocial behaviour in Sutton are well below the London average (Source December 2019 - November 2020). 

Guideline Hours The Council is considering the introduction of guideline hours to be contained within the policy that will apply across the Borough. The policy sets out the generally acceptable hours of operation for licensable premises and activities. In attaching conditions on hours, the draft Policy states that the Authority will generally require that customers should not be allowed to remain on the premises later than half an hour after the sale or supply of alcohol or the provision of regulated entertainment has ceased, except where alcohol is served as an accompaniment to a table meal or where a suitable dispersal policy has been put in place.

By providing guideline hours the Council hopes to encourage potential applicants and licence holders to more actively consider their business plans and priorities in relation to the area in which they are seeking to trade. 

Model Conditions When submitting an application, the applicant must complete an operating schedule. The operating schedule is an important part of the application and should include all the information necessary to allow any responsible authority or interested party to assess whether appropriate steps are being taken to promote each of the four licensing objectives. 

The Policy proposes that applicants and agents have access to a suite of model conditions which they may wish to consider when drafting their application for premises licence or club premises certificate. The conditions have been developed with input from the Responsible Authorities and may assist applicants in determining what measures are proportionate and appropriate to ensure that the operation of their premises will uphold and promote the licensing objectives.

Why your views matter

Bars, restaurants, theatres, cinemas and nightclubs form an important part of local economies as well as providing key services for local residents, visitors and workers. However, some aspects of night time entertainment and socialising, especially those associated with alcohol, can have negative impacts for the wider community, economy and environment. 

The Council is committed to the delivery of sustainable economic growth throughout the Borough and believes that our Town and District Centres are vital to generating a thriving local economy. There is a renewed emphasis on quality of life and how we shape our neighbourhoods in the future. The emergence of local places, businesses and communities demonstrates this is more important than ever.

We must consider the needs of residents and businesses for a safe and healthy environment to live and work in.

The Statement of Licensing Policy under the Licensing Act 2003 will help to ensure that licensable activity is safe and controlled.


  • All Areas


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  • All residents
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  • Well-being
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