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Temporary Event Notices (TENs)

A Temporary Event Notice, or TEN, is required before carrying out licensable activity on unlicensed premises, or when the activity is outside the scope of an existing licence

The Government introduced Temporary Event Notices (TEN) to make provision for small scale one off events, or situations where Premises Licences do not meet the needs of a particular function on a particular night; for example somebody may want a special birthday party at a later time than is included on the Premises Licence, or it may be held in a marquee in a garden of a pub which is not covered under the Premises Licence. The maximum number of people who can enjoy the licensable activities is 499 including staff and any performers.

The events do not have to be special. If a notice is properly issued, and no counter notice is issued, a licensable activity becomes a permitted temporary activity under the TEN.

No further permission or authorisation is necessary. The Licensing Authority simply has to acknowledge the notice by signing it and sending it back to the applicant, thereby giving authority for the event to go ahead.

The Procedure

  • The application form which runs to five pages of questions, plus a further four and half pages of guidance notes is completed and served on the Licensing Authority, the Police and Environmental Health
  • Both the Police and Environmental Health have three working days to object after they receive the application
  • If the Police or Environmental Health object there must be a hearing at least 24 hours before the event in question unless agreement can be reached
  • Where there is an objection from the Police or Environmental Health, conditions can be imposed on the Temporary Event Notice which “have effect” in respect of the same premises or any part of the premises to which the Temporary Event Notice relates
  • There is a right of appeal to the Magistrates’ Court for the police, environmental health and the applicant, but time constraints may prevent this if the application was made at the last minute

Limitations on TENs

The event period itself can last for a maximum seven days. This is the time during which licensable activities may take place, but they do not have to take place during the whole of that seven day period, and some activities may take place at different times to others.

  • No more than 499 people, including staff and performers may attend the event at any one time. If there are 500 people or more, it will be necessary for a Premises Licence to be obtained, even if it is for a one off event
  • The same premises cannot be used under a TEN on more than 15 occasions in a calendar year (during 2022-2023 the Government increased this to 20 days, but it will revert to 15 on 1st January 2024)
  • Two different rooms in the same building could be used as two separate premises – allowing 24 events
  • There must be at least 24 hours between each event at any one premises where the “user” of the TEN is the same person or “connected” persons
  • Although each TEN can last for a period of up to seven days, no more than 21 days can be covered for the premises in question within a calendar year. If an event starts on one day and finishes the next morning this is two days out of the limit of 21 per year (again, this limit was increased – to 26 days – during 2022-2023 but it will revert to 21 in 2024)
  • An individual must apply for a TEN
  • If the individual holds a Personal Licence he can apply for up to 50 Temporary Event Notices per calendar year, assuming that he uses different premises from time to time
  • If he does not hold a Personal Licence he is limited to five per calendar year

Late TENs

It is possible to apply for “late” Temporary Event Notices by giving between five and nine working days notice, although there is a limit of 10 Late Temporary Event Notices each calendar year for an individual holding a Personal Licence (out of their total of 50), and two (out of their total of 5) for those who do not. The other main differences between Late and Standard TENs are that if an authority vetoes a Late TEN there is no right to a hearing or Appeal (it is simply refused), and it is not possible to add conditions to a late TEN.

Applications On-line

You can apply for a Temporary Event Notice here, with Poppleston Allen. You will need to answer some basic questions and send it to us. One of our legal team will check the answers, complete the application form and send it with the appropriate fee and documentation to the Local Authority.
Find out more about our Applications On-line service

Outdoor Festivals

Please see our page on Music Festivals for some top tips on organising outdoor events or festivals with bars. Whilst music festivals tend to cater for more than 500 people and therefore have to have a premises licence, there are some useful tips and advice for running smaller events too.

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