More of your questions answered in this months Hill Brown Licensing Q & A.
I run a pub and we are introducing a pub quiz in January. For obvious reasons we would like to make the prizes alcohol. Is that going to be a problem as l know there are quite strict rules about promotions?
There are very specific categories of ‘irresponsible promotions’ set out in the legislation. Many are open to interpretation but when it comes to alcohol as a prize the answer is fairly simple. It would be considered to be an irresponsible promotion if the alcohol was in the form of alcohol to be consumed on the premises, so a round of drinks is an absolute no no. You could however offer alcohol as a prize if it was in a sealed container and for consumption off the premises. Please however ensure before doing so check that your premises licence allows for the off-sale of alcohol and that the supply is made within the licensed hours specified. These could legally not be before 10am or after 10pm but may be shorter.
Our hotel bar is open 24 hours day but only for hotel guests. We recently had a police visit and they were not happy that we were selling drinks after our licensed hours to those hotel guests and their friends who were staying in our lodges which are not covered by our premises licence. Were we in the wrong?
The answer will depend on how sales to those not staying in the hotel were treated. As you will be aware the Licensing Act allows for sales outwith licensed hours to those residing on the premises and crucially that alcohol can also be consumed by guests of those who reside on the premises. There is a clear distinction between sale and consumption. If the drinks are being charged to the room of the hotel guests or paid for by those guests their friends can consume alcohol. Those same friends are not entitled to be sold alcohol. You mention that they are staying in lodges which you seem to operate. If those lodges were included within you licence, even if they were remote, customers staying in those lodges would be deemed to be residing on the premises and could benefit from 24 hour sales.
For more information you can contact Audrey directly at Hill Brown Licensing: AJ@mshblicensing.com