Introduction Of The New Licensing Act Commerce Essay

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It was said that according the new licensing law the cost for the license would not be different to the old application but to hold a license he establishment must have a licence holder who has been trained and holds a national certificate which is provided as part of passing the course which is £140 per person as well as the time off from the company then they have to apply to the licensing board and pay a fee of £50 to be made the licensee , then the establishment has to hire an architect, lawyer to make the business plans and drawings to submit to the licensing board, already there has been a delay to most of the applicants which has resulted in the government to extend the applications by two months and even then there is no guarantee that at the first time the board will approve the application in some cases the establishment has been waiting since October to have their licence approved this is just some of the cost that is associated with the new license in which it said to be different and cheaper than the old license. Not only is there the normal costs which I have explained but the hidden costs like renewal initial application and transfer of the license some of the other costs that have not been discussed but could be involved are highlighted in "Appendix A and C"

"While all types of pub are closing, in the second half of 2009, the number of independently owned 'free houses' fell more rapidly than the number of pubs in the leased and tenanted sector. There were 576 closures among free houses (22 a week), compared with 320 among tenanted pubs (12 a week), despite the latter being far more numerous overall - the remainder of closures are among managed pubs (117 in total at a rate of five a week). The survey also reveals that a significant number of pubs were sold into the free trade, with 735 being transferred into free house ownership from July to December 2009" as quoted from the beer and pub association website on the 04.02.2010

According to the Scottish Government the number of on-sales licenses have increased from 5,586 to 10,944 which is a jump of 49% since 1945 to 2003 but the number of off-sales licenses has also increased from 2,188 to 6,104 licensee 1945 to 2003 this jump is not as bad as predicted and that of the on-sales but at the time there was nothing to govern the sale of on and off-ales until the new licensing act came into place (see "Appendix B" for full details)

However the sale of alcohol has been changed under the new act and that before the change took place the majority of off-licenses would be open to midnight esp. near a university or near the town but as the rule has changed it so now illegal to sell alcohol after 10 p.m and that the majority of these premises have now seen a dramatic drop in sales because of this

Part of the rules of the act is that there is to be no promotion of cheap or binge drinking and that the pricing of alcohol should last a minimum of 72 hours however the establishments have managed to mangle their way around this to increase their profits and customers especially at the weekend

A study from the focus Alcohol Scotland have proved that the sales of alcohol increase by 25% when promotion's are on the findings show a clear link between off-sales promotions and how much alcohol people buy and therefore consume:

Sales increase by 20-25% when promotions are run

Customers who buy on promotions tend to be heavier spenders than average

83% of customers who purchase alcohol on promotion will return for a second purchase

Largest uptake is among those doing their weekly shop between Friday night and Saturday morning

Wine is the most popular promoted alcohol product

"Some bars in the city have introduced prolonged periods of cheap drink deals to comply with the new 72-hour pricing rule. EUSA has opted to operate a two-tier system in their Potterow venue, with £1.50 deals available during the week being replaced by a standard price at the weekend. Standard prices have been cut throughout all EUSA venues with the price of a pint falling from £2.05 to £1.80. Student specific deals which operate throughout the day, such as those offered by Yellow Cards, remain unaffected." "What is of particular concern, however, is the growing amount of evidence that children, sometimes as young as 12 or 13, are drinking regularly in an unsupervised fashion, and often to excess. On our behalf the Scottish Executive Central Research Unit commissioned research which was undertaken within the context of the Edinburgh Study of Youth Transitions and Crime. That is a large-scale, longitudinal study of approximately 4,300 young people currently aged around 15 and attending schools within Edinburgh. Although the study is confined to young people in Edinburgh, we have no reason to suppose that its findings are not equally valid throughout Scotland as a whole. The major findings of the study are as follows-

Drinking alcohol is a common practice on the part of an overwhelming majority of Edinburgh teenagers under 18. Just over 51% admitted to drinking alcohol when they were around 13 years old, and this figure had risen to almost 84% by the time they were 15.

Almost half (48.7%) drink at least monthly or more often, with half of these drinking on a weekly basis.

Just under half (49.2%) of the respondents had purchased alcohol illegally from at least one source in the previous year.

The most common source of alcohol for these youngsters was a small licensed grocer or corner shop, with 33.2% having purchased alcohol from one of these outlets.

Those who had purchased alcohol were more likely to drink more frequently. 41.8% of alcohol buyers drank on a weekly basis compared to 7.7% of non-buyers. Furthermore, a higher number of sources where alcohol had been purchased also meant a higher frequency of drinking.

Many of those surveyed in the study had succumbed to the adverse effects of drinking alcohol. 48.5% were unable to remember some of the things they had done on at least one occasion, and 45% reported being drunk at least once in the last year.

The study has also found that the purchasing of alcohol, as distinct from frequency of drinking, is strongly related to delinquent behaviour.

We should also add to the foregoing that a separate study of young people in 30 European countries has shown that Scotland, along with the rest of the United Kingdom, Ireland and Denmark, has the highest rates of regular alcohol consumption and drunkenness at the age of 15/16 years. That same study also shows that Scottish girls, at 12%, are unique amongst this age group in their rate of spirit consumption and in having the smallest difference between their drinking patterns and that of boys of a similar age. At a late stage in our deliberations we received further confirmation of the foregoing in the form of an Interim Report on adolescent substance use. That report reveals, among other things, that in the period from 1990 to 2002 the percentage of boys who had had a drink in the past week had increased from 30 to 46 per cent, while the percentage of girls who had had a drink in the past week had increased from 25 to 47 per cent. The report also indicates that, of those boys and girls who drink, the percentage of boys aged 15 who had been drunk four or more times had increased during the period from 1990 to 2002 from 24.8 to 37 per cent, while in the case of girls aged 15 the increase during that period was from 17.3 to 37 per cent. The foregoing figures clearly show that drinking by young girls is now at the same level as drinking by young boys- something which was far from being the case as recently as 12 years ago. The above findings are amply corroborated by what we were told by the various young people whom we met in the course of our work. They confirmed that in their experience regular drinking from as young as 12 years of age is commonplace. They also told us that it was far from uncommon for some of their school colleagues, often as young as 14 or 15, to go out of an evening with the declared intention of becoming drunk. Our young consulters also confirmed that some, though by no means all, small licensed grocers or corner shops tend to be favoured places for purchasing alcohol "without any questions being asked".

We should also add in this context that one of our consulters, who recently retired as Principal of a large mixed-sex school in Edinburgh, expressed the view that in his experience alcohol is a much greater problem for schoolchildren than illicit drugs.

Public order issues

It seems to be clear that there is often a strong correlation between alcohol and aggression, with alcohol affecting the ability to take a range of social or situational signals appropriately into account. Thus, for example, a Home Office report 8 has noted that "it has been estimated that 40% of violent crime, 78% of assaults and 88% of criminal damage cases are committed while the offender is under the influence of alcohol". A further Home Office document

Notes the following-

Alcohol is a factor in 40% of recorded domestic violence incidents.

Victims of violence judged offenders to be under the influence of alcohol in 40% of incidents and in 53% of stranger violence.

19% of all violent incidents occur in or around pubs or clubs, rising to a third of violent incidents where the offender is a stranger.

Drinking in bars is associated with greater violence or aggressive behaviour than in other drinking settings such as private clubs or restaurants.

Alcohol consumption increases the vulnerability of an individual to assault.

Young males aged 16-24 are much more likely to be the perpetrators of alcohol-related violence than any other group"

As detailed above from The Nicholson Committee: Review of Liquor Licensing Law in Scotland the review has highlighted some of the key areas of concern have been the health of the younger generation and crime as well as domestic abuse however that the new license tries to combat all of these the fact remains unlike our European counterparts the British mentality have been grounds to act and enforce the rules for others the main areas in which the report has raised are mainly based on of-sales which has not been regulated and thus promoting the ease of which certain types of alcohol can be bought and according to Janet Hood of the BII said that "we have 20 per cent fewer small businesses in Scotland at the start of the new law .which means That there is 20 per cent fewer social hubs for communities.

"In simple terms, we're killing the very communities on which our tourism industry and the wider economy of Scotland depend upon."

"We know from studies that minimum unit pricing would make very little difference with this group.

"Ministers should stop obsessing about this policy and engage in a serious debate about how to deal with Scotland's hard-drinking culture.

"We need to consider radical measures to reduce the level of problem drinking - including Alcohol Treatment and Testing Orders, a mandatory Challenge 25 scheme and also better education about the dangers of abusing alcohol" the sun newspaper 24.02.2010

Iain Herbert, chief executive of the Scottish Tourism Forum, "said many hoteliers were already struggling to cope with the impact of new licensing and fire safety regulations, which had cost the industry some £72 million to enforce".

According to Meir et al (2008) the real price of alcohol has declined steadily over the past fifty years and the number of outlets has increased;

'Overall between 1980 and 2007 alcohol became 69% more affordable. Liberalisation of licensing laws has led to alcohol being sold in more places and for longer periods of time

Licensed Premises are scrutinised and are subject to restrictions and Licensing Requirements where as the supermarkets are free from such legislation they are fee to operate and regulate themselves accordingly (e.g. the BBPA code 2005 & Mitchell and Butler's 'alcohol and social responsibility policy')The deep discounting by the supermarkets is also having a negative effect on licensed trade sales; according to Nielsen market research (2009) in May 2009, sales of beer in pubs and restaurants fell 11%, wine sales were down 9%, and spirits sales 8%. On-trade sales currently account for 58 % of the market compared to 42 %volume in the off-trade; how the impact of cheap supermarket alcohol is now threatening to topple pubs dominance when it comes to total beer sales, leading to closures.

There is a substantial body of evidence suggesting that drinkers consume alcohol purchased from retail outlets before patronising licensed premises. Additionally, evidence suggests incidents of alcohol related violence and anti-social behaviour are committed by individuals who have consumed alcohol prior to using licensed establishments, yet blame is apportioned to the licensed trade

Around half of 16- to 17-year-olds had tried to buy alcohol from pubs and bars (59%) or shops (47%) in the past 12 months and most had been successful at least once (98% of those trying pubs and bars and 96% of those trying shops).

Number of times successful at buying

Alcohol from shops or pubs in previous 12

Months amongst 10- to 17-year-olds who

Have tried to buy alcohol

10-15 years 16-17 years

S h o p s P u b s/n i g h t c l u b s S h o p s P u b s /n i g h t c l u b s

% % % %

Not at all 1 6 7 4 2

1-10 times 7 0 7 1 5 6 3 2

M o re than 11 t i m e s 1 4 2 2 3 9 6 6

Total % 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0

Base n 1 4 2 1 2 1 3 4 2 4 3 6

1. Source: 2004 Offending, Crime and Justice Survey, weighted data.

2. Results are based on those aged 10 to 17 who had reported they had tried to buy alcohol from a shop, supermarket, off-licence or a pub, bar or nightclub.

It is quite clearly shown above that 70% of 10-15 year olds have tried to buy alcohol from pubs and 71% from nightclubs this is primarily beaus of the fact that there is no legislation in these types of premises and thus allowing the customer to walk in freely and purchase alcohol freely.

There is also no point of sale checks at quick self service or cash registers. There is no overall "Pub watch" scheme which would allow a Licensed Premise to communicate to other Licensed Preemies in the case of the trial at Cannock Staffordshire whereby this lead to a decrease of ASB and litter while driving upon the standards of the premises of the town and the local papers reporting the welcoming of such scheme and promoting the location

Government Calls Time on Irresponsible Drinks Promotions.

Accessed 03.03.2010


As discussed it this essay the main reports have been focussed upon the on-sales side of the licensing trade while no or very little focus is aimed at the off-sales.

Hopefully by the end of the year we will see a new introduction to licensing with the regulation of age verification policies and measurements of alcohol.

Although this seems to be long overdue it will no doubt help implement strong and tough policies for the off-sales especially the supermarkets who continually flaunt and promote specials aimed at discounting alcohol and cheap alcoholic drinks.

This is the main aim of what the Scottish Licensing Act 2005 was supposed to do but unfortunately it has been tackled more for on-sales and wit some major sporting events taking place over the summer this will allow the supermarkets time to adjust their promotions to take advantage of this.

It is my opinion that all these measures will help in future rather than the present, but still there is a lot more work to do for the government to tackle the culture of binge drinking but this will take time and money to implement (if accepted) until then what is the answer ???

Be dictated upon to when and how many drinks we can have and where (not sure this can be policed never mind introduced)

Complete ban on alcohol sales in supermarkets (again not sure this can be implemented or accepted)

There is more work needed done to understand why the continent's frame of mind with regards to alcohol and drinking is different to that of the U.K. and how we (as a nation and individuals) can work towards this being acceptable and not "for the sake"



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BIIAB Scottish Certificate for Personal Licence Holders

BIIAB Scottish Certificate for Licence Standards Officer

Food and Beverage Management by Mr John Cousins, Prof David Foskett, Mr Cailein Gillespie


SH 202 Handouts from the class

Observations and questions to organisations

Publications (online)

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The Scottish Sun dated 24.02.2010 page 14-15