Problems with alcohol in the local area can be anything from an off-licence selling to underage individuals, a noisy bar, or a pub staying open later than it should. To help residents in Cheshire and Merseyside, an online tool has been developed to navigate alcohol licensing legislation and help people raise any concerns.
The website alcohollicensing.org.uk was created following research with residents to help the local community to raise any concerns relating to alcohol licensing in their area. Packed with information, advice and resources, residents can learn more about the methods they can use to resolve issues related to alcohol licensing and make a complaint.
The website includes details on the licensing process and how it works, who to speak to if alcohol is affecting the local community plus many other practical tips on how to get involved.
Concerns regarding alcohol licensing can include the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety and the protection of children.
Representatives from Local Authority Licensing, Public Health, Champs Public Health Collaborative and behaviour change agency Hitch Marketing have been working together to develop the website to encourage residents to become more involved and have their say on licensing decisions that will affect them. This in turn will help local authorities to make and enforce decisions about the most appropriate licensing strategies.
Margaret Jones, Lead Director of Public Health for Alcohol Harm from Champs Public Health Collaborative, said:
“The licensing process can seem overly complicated, intimidating and difficult to navigate, and there is a perception that there is very little support offered to individuals toraise their concerns. We hope the new website will simplify this process and encourage community members to become more involved.
“Residents may be concerned about alcohol retailers in a community, underage sales to young people, or the level of violence and anti-social behaviour that they believe is caused by a licensed premise. The website is designed to be a useful tool to empower residents and guide them through the licensing process.
“Community members have rights under our current licensing legislation that are rarely used. We know that alcohol causes substantial harm in communities and that levels of harm are associated with numbers and types of premises as well as poor retail practices. Given this it is crucial that we support people to make use of their rights and influence what happens in their community. The guidance produced through this collaboration is an important step in providing this support.”
For more details, advice and guidance visit the new website www.alcohollicensing.org.uk