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Alcohol to be consumed in beer garden

Waitress service in my beer garden

Q. I operate a beer garden next to my pub but it is not part of the licensed premises (it is not shown on the drawing attached to my licence). Currently customers take alcoholic drinks out there and consume them but I wish to introduce waiter/waitress service but I have been told that I cannot do this. Is this right?

A. If you have a licence that allows off-sales and I presume that you do then this is not correct advice. If your staff do take orders at tables and then return to the pub, collect the drinks, deliver them to the table and then take payment even outside at the table then this is perfectly lawful. This is because although the drinks are served and the payment taken outside the licensed premises, these are off-sales and the sale takes place at the bar when the alcohol is ‘specifically selected’ (as the Guidance states) and then handed to the waiter/waitress. It, however, would be sensible to check that there are no conditions on the licence which may apply.

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