Alcohol and Entertainment Licences

This section of the site contains information relating to licensing premises and persons who sell or supply alcohol, provide public entertainment including; plays, films, live & recorded music, performance of dance facilities for dancing, late night refreshments and indoor sporting events.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Service Information

The Welsh Government have published Updated Guidance and Frequently Asked Questions for Licensed Premises.

Guidance has been published by the Welsh Government to help employers, employees and the self-employed to understand how to work safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, in compliance with the Coronavirus Restrictions Regulations. It is intended to give you scope, within a practical framework, to think about what you need to do to continue, or restart, operations.

Information is available on the following areas:

Information is being received that licensed premises in the Torfaen area are flouting government instructions to close during the coronavirus pandemic and holding ‘lock-ins’.  All information received is and will continue to be investigated.  Any licensee who fails to comply with the government regulations and the terms of their licence may be handed prohibition notices  and potentially unlimited fines.  The licence holder also risks the loss of their licence.

If you would like to report a licensed premises that is holding a ‘lock-in’, please contact the Police on 101 or email licensing; licensing@torfaen.gov.uk

On 26 March 2020 The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (Wales) Regulations
2020 came into force, replacing previous regulations relating to restrictions in Wales.  This requires the cessation of many Licensable Activities.  Please ensure that you are aware of your responsibilities at this time.

The Licensing team ask that until further notice all applications and required documents are submitted via email to licensing@torfaen.gov.uk. All applications must be fully completed and include a telephone number so that we may contact the applicant to take payment of the relevant application fee. 

We will confirm receipt of each application by e-mail and will provide a unique reference number for the application. The Council’s telephone contact centre, Call Torfaen, will then call the applicant to take the necessary payment, quoting the unique reference number for the application.

Please note that an application will not be deemed valid and properly made until payment is received. Renewal applications and payment must be received before the licence expires.

Right to work checks have been temporarily adjusted to make it easier for employers to carry out the checks during the Coronavirus outbreak.  Guidance on how to undertake a Right to Work check during the outbreak is available on the GOV.UK website.

The team are currently working on a day by day basis following guidance as it is provided and all of the above is subject to change at any given time.  We will advise you of any changes as and when we know and we thank you for your co-operation and patience.

Our preferred means of contact during this time is via email to licensing@torfaen.gov.uk 

Licensing Act 2003 Policy 

The Licensing Act 2003 requires each Licensing Authority to determine and publish a statement of its licensing policy at least once every five years.  The policy must be published before it carries out any licensing functions under the Act.

The current licensing policy was adopted on 1st November 2015 and as such it is now currently being reviewed.  You can view the Draft Licensing Policy here.  It is important that you take the opportunity to read this document and we welcome any comments on this policy.  The consultation period ends on Sunday 17th May 2020.

Please forward any comments or queries that you may have by email to licensing@torfaen.gov.uk or by letter to Licensing, Ty Blaen, Panteg Way, New Inn, Pontypool NP4 0LS. 

Minimum Unit Pricing on Alcohol

On 2 March 2020 The Public Health (Minimum Price for Alcohol)(Wales) Act 2018 came into effect.

The Welsh Government has introduced the legislation to try and reduce the number of alcohol related illnesses and deaths in Wales.

The new law means that retailers must now charge a minimum unit price of 50p per unit for alcoholic drinks, based on the amount of alcohol in the product. This applies to both ON sale and OFF sale premises.  Online retail sales are also included in the law, so if you purchase from an online retailer they may ask to check your postcode before confirming the price of their products.

A retailer should not mislead you on price.  If you have concerns that a shop is charging a higher price at the till than is displayed on the label, you should let Trading Standards know, by calling the national consumer advice line on 03454 040506.

If you hold a licence to sell alcohol in Torfaen, especially in an off licence setting, then you will be receiving a visit from the Torfaen County Borough Council Trading Standards Team to provide you with more information on how the law affects you. If you have any queries in the meantime, please contact trading.standards@torfaen.gov.uk

Alternatively, you can find more information, including downloadable posters and information leaflets on the Welsh Government website. 

Child Sexual Exploitation - Know the signs

To help keep children safe Heddlu Gwent Police are again urging members of the public to be vigilant about this kind of criminality, and to contact them by dialling 101 or 999 in an emergency with any information they may have. To help members of the public recognise the signs of exploitation and abuse Gwent Police have published a web page.

The Police would rather hear from concerned members of the public who report issues which turn out not to be Child sexual exploitation (CSE), than not be called at all.

Office Opening Hours

The opening hours for personal callers to the office at New Inn for the licensing team are Monday to Friday between 9:00am and 12:00 midday. Where this causes difficulties, in exceptional circumstances, an appointment can be made to visit outside of these hours. Please contact the office to arrange this. We are available on the telephone (01633 647284) between 9:00am and 4:30pm.

Electronic Cigarettes

We receive regular enquiries about the use of electronic cigarettes in relevant premises, and licensed vehicles. The advice/information we are currently offering is as follows:

  • Whilst they are not illegal it would be hard to prove that they are not a real cigarette if seen by an enforcement officer passing by
  • That it does not send the correct message to the customers and could lead to abuse of the legislation
  • JD Wetherspoons pubs have decided to implement an internal policy to prevent their use on their premises

We will continue to monitor the situation and provide information here when necessary.

Postal address for Police Licensing Officer

Please note that any correspondence that needs to be sent to the Police Licensing Officer should be sent to:

The Chief Officer of Police
Licensing Department
Caerphilly Road
Ystrad Mynach
CF82 7EP

The Licensing Act 2003 

The Licensing Act 2003 came into effect on 24 November 2005. In February 2005 the Licensing Authority began to administer the conversion of Justice's Licences to the new Personal and Premises licences. All premises involved in the sale of alcohol or the provision of late night refreshments and regulated entertainment were affected. 

If you have concerns about any of the applications for licences under the new act you may have the right to make representations or objections about applications. For information on how to do this please see the information leaflet under the general section. 

The Licensing Act places a legal obligation on the Licensing Authority to publish a Public Register of applications and licences granted, this can be viewed from the link in the general section. 

Current Licensing Act 2003 - Consultation Notices can be found here.

The Live Music Act 2012

The Live Music Act 2012 came into effect on the 1 October 2012.  A brief summary of the provisions of the Act has been provided for your information.

Guidance for "Community Events"

The Local Government Association has published a guide to Community Events. This document is intended for Councillors, but is relevant to all those who are involved in the organisation of such events. It covers such aspects such as street closures, licences, insurance and public liability. 

Please Note - Torfaen County Borough Council (The Council) is under a duty to protect the public funds which it administers and to this end may use the information you provide within Torfaen County Borough Council for the prevention and detection of fraud. The Council may also share this information with other bodies administering or in receipt of public funds solely for these purposes. For further information, visit the National Fraud Initiative area of the website. 

Last Modified: 28/09/2020
For more information contact:

Licensing Team

Tel: 01633 647286

Email: licensing@torfaen.gov.uk 

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