Licensing | LocalGov

Sunderland considers minimum alcohol price


Sunderland City Council is set to launch a consultation on introducing a local minimum unit price for alcohol.

Norfolk caught in bitter battle over bats


A council leader has launched an attack on Natural England after the environment watchdog effectively blocked a £274m road scheme due to its impact on bats.

Brent council set to launch landlord licensing scheme


A new borough-wide landlord licensing scheme is set to launch in Brent on April 1, the council has announced.

Council chiefs call for powers to tackle rogue shisha bars


Local authority leaders have called for more powers to crack down on rogue shisha bars.

LGA warning over XL Bully dogs ban


Councils face a double whammy of soaring costs and declining police support as they try to enforce a ban on XL Bully dogs.

Brixton Academy to reopen after fatal crush


Brixton Academy will open next month for the first time since two people died in a crowd crush in December 2022.

2,700 dangerous animals kept as pets


Lions, tigers and venomous snakes are among the 2,700 wild animals kept at private addresses across the UK, wildlife charity Born Free has revealed.

Vape industry proposes alcohol-style licensing scheme


A first-of-its kind licensing framework for the UK vape industry is being put forward in Parliament today.

Bolton backs first hypnotism show in 40 years


Bolton Council's licensing panel have signed off on the town's first legal hypnotism performance in more than four decades.

Coroner's deadline for council after Rottweiler mauling


A licensing team has been given until 13 November to respond after being urged to take a ‘more proactive approach’ following a fatal dog attack.

London councillors call for smokefree pavement seating


Councillors have written to the Government to call for the introduction of a national smokefree condition for pavement seating outside pubs and restaurants.

Councils urged to allow pubs to open early for World Cup final


Michael Gove has written to council leaders across England urging them to ensure pubs can open early on Sunday for the Lionesses historic World Cup final.

Takeaway pint licensing rules extended


The trade association representing pubs in England and Wales have welcomed an extension of the licensing rules that allow landlords to sell takeaway pints.

Newcastle taxis to adopt city’s football colours


Taxis in Newcastle could be branded in the colours of the city's football team in a bid to improve safety.

Housing experts voice ‘concern’ over HMO licensing changes


Housing and refugee rights experts have voiced ‘extreme concern’ over plans to remove licensing requirements for HMOs used as asylum accommodation.

Think tank calls for expansion of ‘selective licencing’


London councils are being prevented from adopting schemes to improve conditions for people in private rented accommodation by regulations, researchers say.

Petition to save venue after crush deaths hits 50,000


A petition calling on Lambeth Council to save the O2 Academy Brixton after two people were crushed to death last year has reached over 50,000 signatures.

Taxi drivers to face ‘tough’ new licensing measures


New rules will mean taxi and private hire drivers who lose their council licence won't be able to apply in another area without their history being disclosed.

Councils urged to consult taxi driver database


The DfT wrote to local authorities urging them to consult the taxi driver database after figures revealed the councils who are failing to make full use of it.

Beavers reintroduced to London borough of Ealing


Ealing is set to welcome beavers back to the borough for the first time in four centuries in a major council-supported reintroduction project.

Council extends venue’s licence suspension after crush deaths


Lambeth Council yesterday suspended the O2 Academy Brixton’s premises licence for a further three months following last month’s tragic crush.

Lambeth Council suspends venue licence after fatalities


Lambeth Council has temporarily suspended the licence of O2 Academy Brixton after a crowd surge at the venue resulted in two people losing their lives.

Council announces ‘largest’ selective licensing scheme in UK


Birmingham City Council has been granted permission to introduce a Selective Licensing Scheme for all private rented properties in 25 wards across the city.

Council revokes late night levy


Nottingham City Council has announced it is revoking a levy on late night licensed premises in a bid to ease the financial pressure on local businesses.

Peers highlight lack of progress improving 'flawed' Act


Little progress has been made in addressing the lack of coordination between the licensing and planning systems, a House of Lords committee has reported.

Licensing laws to be reviewed to fight ‘invisible crime’ of spiking


Local authority leaders have welcomed a Government decision to review the licensing laws to assess whether they are robust enough to tackle spiking.

Council chiefs call for more event licensing powers


Councils should have the power to set local event licensing fees to ensure they fully cover the associated administrative costs, the LGA has said.

Council chiefs call for locally led pavement licensing regime


Local authority leaders have called on the Government to introduce a permanent but locally led pavement licensing regime for cafés and bars.

MPs urge licensing authorities to use powers to tackle spiking


Local authorities have been urged to use their licensing powers to ensure venues take action to prevent spiking incidents and keep customers safe by MPs.

All Scottish councils to set up short-term lets licensing schemes


New legislation will require all local authorities in Scotland to set up licensing schemes for all short-term let properties.

Campaigners call for a national landlord register


Campaigners have called on the Government to introduce a national landlord register as evidence shows that local schemes help improve the quality of rented accommodation.

Al fresco dining in Westminster set to continue post-lockdown


Westminster City Council has decided to continue supporting a number of outdoor dining schemes after a positive response to al fresco dining from locals.

How can local authorities benefit from digitised licencing tools?


Nicola Ray explains how the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority has updated its licensing system to ensure the safety of vulnerable workers and protect them from exploitation.

Why councils should have the power to improve safety of cosmetic treatments


Tony Veverka argues local authorities must be given new powers to better regulate non-surgical cosmetic procedures.

Councils warn licensing decisions should cover public health


Council leaders have called for the power to take public health into account when deciding whether to grant licences to protect communities from harm.

Councils approve more than 2,000 pavement licences in past year


Councils approved requests from businesses for more than 17,000 extra outdoor seats in the past year, new research has discovered.

Manchester council to consider extending selective licensing schemes


Manchester City Council’s executive will be asked to approve a consultation on extending selective licensing schemes to up to 12 new locations in the city which cover around 2,500 homes.

How local authorities could help their private hire and taxi drivers


Dr. Tom Vickers outlines how local authorities can help improve the working conditions and economic insecurity among private hire and taxi drivers.

Councils call for tougher licensing powers to tackle COVID-19 safety breaches


Councils have called for a temporary change in licensing laws to allow them to close down premises that are not protecting the public during the pandemic.

Councils call for action to ensure smoke-free pavements


Councils have called for pavements outside pubs, bars and cafes to be smoke-free.

Planning rules relaxed to support outdoor dining


The Government has temporarily lifted planning rules to allow pubs, restaurants and cafes to serve customers outdoors.

Next mayor should ‘step up’ fight against rogue landlords, group says


Half of London’s boroughs did not fine any landlords for letting out unsafe homes in the past year, new research reveals.

Councils warn moves to license hand car washes must be fully funded


Councils have warned that any attempt to licence hand car washes must be fully funded by license fees.

Councils urge retailers to become 'no knife shops'


Councils are urging retailers not to sell knives in an effort to tackle the knife crime epidemic.

Managing short-term lets


Deborah Heather explores the issue of homestay rentals and managing short-term lets within council boundaries.

Approval given for council's landlord licensing scheme


A large-scale selective licensing scheme in Waltham Forest has been approved by the Government.

Liverpool criticises 'short-sighted' rejection of its landlord licensing scheme


The Government has been branded ‘short-sighted’ after it refused Liverpool’s application to continue its landlord licensing scheme.

Scottish councils granted powers to regulate short-term lets


Local authorities in Scotland are to be given new powers to regulate short-term lets where they decide this is in the interests of local communities.

Manchester to implement Martyn’s Law


Manchester City Council is set to Martyn’s Law to improve security at all public venues.

Council chiefs warn of ‘bogus' Christmas taxi drivers


Local authority leaders have warned revellers of the dangers of unlicensed rogue drivers around Christmas time.

Wakefield council ‘overcharging’ cabbies, court rules


A court has ruled that Wakefield council were overcharging local taxi drivers for a licence to trade in what could prove to be a landmark case.

Manchester calls in Uber for urgent meeting


Uber's troubles have continued with Manchester City Council revealing it has requested an urgent meeting with the company over concerns regarding licensing rules.

Uber loses licence to operate in London


Transport for London (TfL) has ruled against granting Uber a new private hire operator’s licence, deeming it to 'not be fit and proper' to hold one.

Outdated taxi laws putting public at risk, councils warn


The Government has been urged to reform 'outdated and flawed' taxi laws by the Local Government Association (LGA).

A licence to let


With the government’s recent focus on regulating the private rented sector, Neil Merrick explores how councils are using licensing scheme to tackle rogue landlords.

Council accreditation scheme ‘discriminatory’, landlords say


A landlord accreditation scheme in Oxford is ‘discriminatory and unlawful’, a landlord association has claimed.

Councils failing to use powers for rent repayment orders, landords warns


Councils are failing to use new powers to force bad landlords to pay back rent, the Residential Landlords Association (RLA) have warned.

'Postcode lottery' for landlord licences is revealed


The most expensive landlord licencing schemes cost 21 times more than the cheapest ones, new research has revealed.

Councils call for licensing powers to tackle ‘lawless’ shisha bars


Councils have called for new powers to tackle ‘lawless’ shisha bars that flout smoking and fire regulations.

Whitehall launches consultation on taxi licensing


Local authorities could soon be required to ensure that every prospective taxi driver undergoes enhanced criminal record and background checks.

Report sets out how to make selective licensing more effective


Selective licensing schemes are helping to tackle dangerous properties but they could be more effective if the Government introduced some simple measures.

The confusing tale of a councillor, an escort agency and a licencing committee


Mark Whitehead investigates why a councillor removed from a licensing committee over his connection to an escort agency was not reinstated when cleared of any wrong-doing.

Councils awarded £2m to tackle rogue landlords


Councils are being urged to bid for new funding to to step up enforcement action against irresponsible landlords.

Councils granted powers to punish rogue mobile home site owners


Local authorities will have more powers to crack down on rogue mobile home site owners, the Government has announced.

Councils welcome report into tougher taxi laws


Local authorities have welcomed recommendations to introduce national minimum standards for taxi and private hire vehicle licensing.

Whitehall launches selective licensing review


The Government has announced it is launching a review into selective licensing to find out how well it is working.

Blackpool first council to be awarded self-supply water licence


Blackpool Council has been granted a self-supply licence to manage and monitor its own water usage across its 120 sites.

Council fines 'try before you buy’ sex toy shop


A local authority in the north east has fined a sex doll company £10,000 for operating without a licence.

Redbridge cracks down on ‘rogue landlords’ with licensing scheme


The Government has given the go-ahead for the expansion of a new licensing scheme across Redbridge to help the council improve conditions for private renters.

Brighton is latest council to turn down Uber licence


Brighton & Hove City Council has refused to renew Uber’s licence after finding the firm is not ‘fit and proper’.

New guide provides national benchmark for granting taxi licences


A new guide to help councils decide if someone should be granted a taxi or private hire licence has been published today by the Institute of Licensing (IoL).

Burnham proposes ‘rogue landlord’ amnesty


Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham has proposed an amnesty for ‘rogue landlords’ in an attempt to drive them out of the private rented sector.

Calls for councils to have power to confiscate properties from criminal landlords


Local authorities should be given the power to confiscate properties from landlords who exploit vulnerable tenants, MPs have said today.

Rogue landlord database goes live


A new national database which will enable councils to share information about rogue landlords went live today as part of an effort to crackdown on illegal practices in the private rented sector.

Nottingham gets approval for new landlord licensing scheme


A new licencing scheme to help improve the condition of privately rented homes in Nottingham has been given the green light by the Government.

Rogue landlords forced to pay back ‘racketeering’ proceeds


Brent has become the first council in the country to use the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) against slum landlords for breaches of licensing conditions.

Blackpool set to become first council to manage its own water supply


Blackpool Council has applied to Ofwat for a water and sewerage licence, making it the first local authority to move towards managing its own water supply.

Taxi licences granted to drivers with criminal convictions, campaigners warn


Taxi and private hire vehicle licences are being granted to drivers with criminal convictions because there are no national minimum standards to enforce sufficient safety checks, campaigners say.

Councils given power to tackle overcrowding in private homes


Councils have been given more power to crack-down on overcrowded homes and stop landlords from renting out sub-standard properties.

London council launches taskforce to crack down on unlawful Airbnb lettings


A team of council officers is hitting the streets in Westminster to crack down on unlawful Airbnb lettings.

Sheffield's suspends Uber's licence over 'management questions'


Online taxi firm Uber has had its licence suspended by Sheffield City Council after allegedly failing to answer questions about its management.

Uber's licence renewal refused by Transport for London


Transport for London (TfL) has announced that it will not be renewing Uber’s licence to operate in the capital – with the full backing of mayor Sadiq Khan.

Taxi laws ‘outdated’ and pose safeguarding risks, council chiefs say


Council chiefs have called on the Government to reform ‘existing outdated’ taxi laws in order to strengthen safeguarding measures.

Council prosecutes letting agent for issuing ‘sham licences’


Islington Council has successfully prosecuted a letting agent for issuing ‘sham licences’ in the first prosecution of its kind.

Council urges shopkeepers to not sell acid to youths


Hackney LBC has urged shopkeepers to stop selling the dangerous products like acid and ammonia to young people after a spate of violent attacks in the capital.

Girl, 5, fined for selling lemonade


A London council has fined a five-year-old girl for selling homemade lemonade on the street without a license.

Council wins court case to recoup £1.3m licensing costs


Westminster City Council has won a long-running Supreme Court case over the licensing fee it had charged sex shops.

Lincoln grants license for Lamborghini taxi


Lincoln residents will soon be able to hire a Lamborghini as a ‘taxi with a twist’, council says.

Enforcement regime on displaying agent fees ‘failing’, survey reveals


The enforcement regime on displaying agent fees is ‘failing’, says licensing group as survey reveals the majority of councils are not issuing penalties for non-compliance.

Council officers discover up to 40 people crammed into three-bedroom house


A raid by a London council has uncovered a three-bedroom home being shared by 17 people.

Councils hit out at 'ill-advised' calls to scrap licensing committees


Local government leaders have rejected a call by to scrap licensing committees as 'unnecessary and ill-advised'.

Council refuses zoo licence due to animal deaths


Barrow BC has refused to issue a new licence to a zoo in Cumbria - where a keeper was killed in 2013 - after an inspection revealed many animals had died due to the poor conditions.

Controversy over council decision to cut down Queen Mother’s trees


Northumberland council has been criticised for cutting down trees that were planted in the Queen Mother’s honour.

Councils to get tough on 'backstreet' puppy breeders


Councils are to be given greater powers to help crack down on irresponsible puppy breeders under tough new licensing rules announced today.

Rotherham Council handed back licensing powers


Rotherham Council will be given back control of taxi services, although commissioners will oversee licensing decisions until 31 March 2019, the communities secretary has said.

‘Worrying’ minibus licensing loophole must be closed, councils say


A ‘worrying’ licensing loophole that allows people to transport members of the public in minibuses without having a criminal record check must be closed, council chiefs urge.

Airbnb to enforce 90-day limit on rentals in London


Council leaders have welcomed the announcement by Airbnb that it will ensure landlords have planning permission if they want to rent out their entire home for more than 90 days a year.

Fabric to reopen following new agreement with council


Fabric nightclub will be allowed to reopen after it reached an agreement with Islington Council, setting out tough new licensing measures.

London council joins Kent's Licensing Partnership


A London council has joined a Kent-based local authority licensing partnership in a bid to improve service delivery and save thousands of pounds.

Whitehall’s reluctance to tackle taxi loophole ‘deeply concerning’


The Government's reluctance to tackle Rotherham taxi loophole is ‘deeply concerning’, say MPs.

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Banning urban pesticide use

RSPB and PAN are working on a letter from local councillors calling on the Government to introduce a national ban on urban pesticide use. Find out more below.
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