The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #50309   Message #770394
Posted By: The Shambles
23-Aug-02 - 03:32 PM
Thread Name: Action For Music. PELs
Subject: RE: Action For Music. PELs
It is somewhat ironic to have chains like Witherspoons, who provide no live music in their pubs as allies, and that Shepherd Neame's objections do not concentrate on the entertainment aspect.

The starting point is the present cost of the liquor licence. It is £30, set and paid to the Courts.

95% of premises just pay this. Some of these can provide live music that is currently exempt from the PEL requirement.

Only 5% have PELs but not all of these premises provide live music, as the PEL is a necessary requirement for late opening hours. All late night dancing clubs with only pre-recorded music will have PELs.

So the current revenue, paid to the local authority, from all PELs is only coming from 5% of liquor licensed premises.

The fee for this ranges from £150 to thousands of pounds, dependent on capacity and which local authority.

The Government propose to combine the two elements together, to set and charge the same fee, even on premises that still do not wish to provide live music. It is difficult to give precise figures from the White Paper but it will mean a considerable increase for all premises.

There will be a personal licence costing between £180 and £ 225, valid for 10 years.

The premises licence (including the optional entertainment element), costing between £100 and £500, will be valid for the life of the business.

And an annual charge will additionally have to be paid of between £50 to £150.

The White Paper warns that. "This means that even if the proposed streamlined and simplified system reduces costs, it may prove necessary to increase the fees from their present level".

So you can see.

So for a licensee that did not and does not provide any live music or need any extended opening, what they paid £30 for, they will now be paying considerably more, with no resulting benefit.

It could be argued that the liquor licence has been too low and I have no real objection to an increase, but I do expect that all premises would be made safe for entertainment on receipt of this vast amount of money.

The industry has argued that to make all premises safe for entertainment would cost too much!

So we will have a situation where local authorities will claim that one person singing (on a regular basis) without official permission obtained well in advance, will automatically make these liquor licensed premises unsafe.