Operators who fail to comply face having premises closed
OPERATORS must comply with new premises licence holder (PLH) refresher training or risk having their business closed down.
That was the stark warning from SLTA chief executive Paul Waterson last week as he urged licensees to start planning for refresher courses now.
Speaking at the trade group’s AGM at Braid Hills Hotel in Edinburgh, Waterson stressed the importance of PLH refresher training, which must be undertaken five years from the date the licence was issued.
The new training spec, which was developed by sector skills council People 1st and launched earlier this month, covers the 2005 licensing Act, as well as the Alcohol and Criminal Justice and Licensing Acts 2010. There’s said to be tighter requirements on how the training for the PLH qualification is delivered and assessed.
Waterson pointed operators to a new website www.scplh.info which features the new PLH training standards as well as a calculator to help
personal licence holders work out when they need to complete the training.
“This refresher training is vitally important,” he said.
“If personal licence holders do not take a formal certified refresher training course and notify the appropriate licensing board within five years of grant, their personal licence will lapse.
“If a personal licence holder is also a premises manager and this happens, your premises licence will also lapse meaning automatic closure of the business. The law is quite clear on that.
“I urge everyone to go to a specially prepared website www.scplh.info which gives information and answers questions on the subject.
“It also has an interactive page which will tell you individually when you or your staff must take your refresher course to conform to the regulations.”
Waterson also addressed the “thorny issue” of licensing fees at the AGM.
With a new fee structure due to be implemented in October 2014, he said the SLTA has reiterated its concerns about the “high level of fees and their unfair application”.
“We have always said that using the rating system as the basis for charges is completely biased against the on-trade and favours supermarkets,” said Waterson.
“We have urged the government to look at more fee bandings, specifically with a higher rate for supermarkets, which we think should take a larger proportion of the fee burden.”