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Covid-19 regulations for licensed premises

On 31 October 2020 the Government announced new restrictions which apply to all of England to try and reduce the spread of coronavirus.

These new measures came in to effect on Thursday 5 November 2020, and replaced all the restrictions that were in place under England's three tier system.

What does it mean for licensed premises?

Under these restrictions no alcohol sales, at any time may be provided by a walk-in service unless you are a business which the Government has classified as being an essential service, which includes:

  • food retailers, including food markets, supermarkets, convenience stores and corner shops
  • off licences and licensed shops selling alcohol (including breweries)

Hospitality venues, such as cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and social clubs must close for consumption on the premises, but may provide a takeaway/delivery service as follows:

  • Food or drink (no alcohol)
  • Between the hours of 22:00 and 05:00 the next morning, premises may sell food or drink for takeaway but the sale must be pre-ordered(by a website, phone call, text or post) and only made via a delivery, click and collect or a drive-thru facility. The purchaser must not enter the premises or vacate their vehicle.
  • Alcohol - a premise may sell alcohol at any time but the sale must be pre-ordered (via a website, phone call, text or post) and only made via a delivery, click and collect or drive-thru facility. The purchaser must not enter the premises or vacate their vehicle.

The Regulations do not override the hours and conditions of each individual Premises Licence, and these must be adhered to at all times.

Details for types of premises

Off licences are exempt from the above as they are not a business that is required to close however they are still subject to their current premises licence hours and conditions.

Hotels/guest houses may continue to provide a room service.

Venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries and bingo halls, bowling alleys must close.

Community centres and halls such as village halls and parish churches must also close except to carry out a limited number of activities. You can find out what activities community centres and halls can carry out in the government's guidance on the new restrictions.

Further information on Government guidance

Read the Government's full guidance about the new National Restrictions here.

Section 4 of the guidance details what licensed premises can and can't do.

We also recommend you check the Government's business support information page which provides information about financial support available to businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.

We understand that this is a very stressful and anxious time for everyone in the hospitality industry and we recognise that all businesses have had an incredibly challenging year. We would like to take this opportunity to thank you once again for your continued co-operation and patience through this difficult period.

Download the full regulations here.