Appeal against a special treatment establishment licensing decision

If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of a licensing hearing where you were the applicant you can appeal through the courts against the decision of the Licensing Committee. There is no right of appeal by anyone opposing an application.

What decisions can be appealed

Appeals can be made about a decision on an application for a:

  • New Special Treatment Establishment licence
  • Variation to an existing licence
  • Transfer of an existing licence
  • Renewal of a licence
  • Request to remove or amend a standard condition

Who can appeal

An applicant has the right to appeal against a decision of the Regulatory Licensing Committee. They can appeal if they think:

  • The licence should have been granted
  • The Regulatory Licensing Committee should have imposed different or less stringent conditions on the licence
  • The licence should not have been revoked

How to appeal

You should appeal in writing to the designated officer for the magistrates' court in the area where the premises is situated. In Wandsworth this is usually:

South Western Magistrates' Court
176a Lavender Hill
SW11 1JU

DX 58559 Clapham Junction Court number 2649

You must make your appeal within 21 days of being formally told of the Licensing Committees' decision in writing.

You should contact the magistrates' court to check how to make an appeal. You will be required to pay a fee to the court when you lodge an appeal.

Will an appeal stop the decision taking effect?

Where a licence is revoked or an application for renewal is refused, the licence will remain in force until the determination or abandonment of the appeal. Where a licence is renewed or a variation granted but with terms, conditions or restrictions not previously specified on the licence, the licence shall be deemed to be free of it until determination of the appeal.

Once an appeal has been made

The magistrates' court has two options after receiving an appeal. It can:

  • Dismiss the appeal
  • Substitute the decision for any other decision the Regulatory Licensing Committee could have made

Procedure at an appeal hearing

We, as the local authority, will be the 'respondents' to appeals. We will normally be present at appeal hearings.

The person appealing would normally open the case and call his or her witnesses. However, in licensing cases, the court may invite the licensing authority to speak first, if everyone agrees.

This is to help the court understand how we came to our licensing decision in the first place. Usually, anyone at an appeal hearing can call on witnesses to support their case (for example, other local residents).

Standard of evidence

If you wish to appeal a decision of the Licensing Authority you are strongly advised to seek legal representation and/or contact the relevant court for further advice. We will not be able to assist you.

Legal costs

If you appeal against the Licensing Committees' decision and you are unsuccessful, the court can award costs against you. This would mean you have to pay other parties' legal costs as well as your own.

What happens next

The court tells all interested parties of its decisions with the reasons.

An appeal by either party against the decision of the Magistrates Court may be brought to the Crown Court. More information can be found at the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary website.