You can apply for a premises licence if you intend to sell alcohol or provide ‘licensable activities’ from a particular venue, unless you have a temporary event notice or club premises certificate.

Licensable activities include:

  • selling alcohol (including online sales)
  • serving hot food and drinks between 11pm and 5am

You’ll also need a licence if you provide the following types of entertainment:

  • theatrical performance
  • showing a film
  • indoor sporting event
  • boxing or wrestling (indoor or outdoor)
  • live music
  • recorded music
  • dance
  • facilities for making music
  • dancing facilities

You still need a licence even if the activities are for charity.

The rules regarding premises licences are in the Licensing Act 2003 and the Licensing Act 2003 (Premises licences and club premises certificates) Regulations 2005


You don’t need a licence for some types of entertainment, including:

  • educational or promotional films
  • films shown as part of an exhibition in a museum or gallery
  • incidental music (live or recorded)


You must be, or appoint, a designated premises supervisor (DPS) when you apply for a licence. A DPS must have a personal licence to sell alcohol.

There may be other conditions added to your licence, such as having an age-checking policy if you sell alcohol. Read a guide to ensuring that underage sales of alcohol do not take place.

Apply for a premises licence

Download the premises licence application form.

You’ll need to provide:

You should read Section 182 Licensing Act Guidance.

We recommend that you complete the risk assessment form to help you decide what should be entered in your operating schedule of your licence application, to show how you will promote the 4 licensing objectives.

Fees and payment

You’ll be charged a fee that’s based on the rateable value of the property.

Payment can be made by card over the phone, or by sending a cheque. The 28 day representation period starts once payment is received. 

After you've made an application

There is a 28 day period during which the responsible authorities and any other person can make representations about a new premises licence application. If no representations are received within this 28 day period, the application is granted with the relevant mandatory conditions and any conditions consistent with your operating schedule.

If representations are received, the application process can take longer as a licensing sub-committee might need to be arranged to to hear the application.

Displaying your application notice

You must display your ‘application notice’ at or on the premises for 28 days from the day after it was submitted. View the advertising requirements.

Appealing a decision

If your licence application is refused, you can appeal. Appeals should be made to the Magistrates Court within 21 days of being notified of the Licensing Authority's decision.

You can also appeal against any conditions attached to your premises licence, including a decision to:

  • exclude a licensable activity from the licence
  • exclude a person from being the DPS
  • reject a variation application or a transfer application

Displaying your licence

You must display the ‘licence summary’ at your premises where it can be easily seen.

The other pages of the licence should be kept safely at the premises. Police or council officers can ask to inspect them at any time.

Length of licence

Most premises licences have an unlimited duration but you will have to pay an annual fee.

Fines and penalties

You can be fined up to £1,000 for failing to produce your licence on request.

If you carry out any licensable activities at your premises without a premises licence, you can be fined, sent to prison for up to 6 months, or both.

Best Bar None in Weymouth and Portland

The council, Dorset Police and Pubwatch work together to encourage as many bars, pubs and nightclubs to take part in the Best Bar None scheme, which aims to reduce alcohol-related crime and disorder in towns by building a positive relationship between the licensed trade, police and local authorities.

If you are a bar, pub or nightclub in Weymouth who would like to be a part of Best Bar None, please contact us.

  • application form
  • applicants guidance notes
  • scoring booklet
  • sample policies, procedures and logs

Contact us