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Are you prepared for the Euro 2024 kick-off?

As part of a summer of sporting events, the Men’s UEFA Euro 2024 football tournament kicks off Friday 14 June and runs until Sunday 14 July

With Home Nations England and Scotland participating in the tournament,  pubs up and down the country will be hoping to have a busy and successful trading period. Ahead of the tournament, here are a few things to consider to help keep your pub “on-side” with licensing law.

Extended Hours for showing of games

Let’s start with the good news. Given the games are in Germany and being shown at a sociable hour in the UK, it is unlikely that you are going to need any extension to the hours for your premises licence. However, should England or Scotland battle their way to the semi- finals (or dare we dream, the final), the Government has introduced legislation so that on-licensed premises in England & Wales can open until 1am the following morning for the sale of alcohol and late night refreshment (hot food & hot drinks) on the premises after the game. For further details see our enews here.

It’s important to note that this legislation only applies to premises already authorised for alcohol sales until at least 23:00, so if for example your licence only permits the sale of alcohol until 22:30 you will not benefit and will instead have to issue a Temporary Events Notice. This is particularly relevant for the final, which takes place on a Sunday, a day when traditionally many pubs’ terminal hour for alcohol sales is earlier than 11pm. Indeed, the standard hours for Sunday in some London boroughs are 22:30.

The crucial thing is to check your licence and apply for a Temporary Events Notice where required.

If you want to stay open later for other matches, the quarter finals (or semi-finals and finals in the event England/ Scotland don’t make it), then you may need to issue a Temporary Events Notice (TEN) to do so. Remember however, TENs are subject to strict rules and notice periods, so check your requirements straight away if you think you might need one.

Some licences have a permission authorising additional hours for major international sporting events on notice to the Police, who often have a veto. Check the wording if your licence contains such a permission – it may be under the ‘conditions’ section at Annex 2.

Screening the football matches

You are not required to have any permission on your premises licence if you are simply showing live TV broadcasts.  Make sure however that you have the appropriate TV licences and permissions from relevant broadcasters. You may also need a PRS / PPL licence in place to deal with any copyright issues.

Use of outdoors areas

Many will want to maximise use of your outdoors areas and you may even wish to screen the matches outside.

In licensing law there is nothing to stop you showing the matches in your outdoor area/ beer garden, provided that there no conditions on your Premises Licence preventing this or restricting the use of your outdoor area. Just note there may be planning issues to consider if you are considering putting a large screen up depending upon the size of the screen and length of time the screen is going to remain in place.

Subject to any conditions on the licence, if your outdoor area is not licensed for sale of alcohol but you have ‘off sales’ permission then your customers can consume their alcoholic drinks within the area, whereas if your outdoor area is licensed for on sales (and you don’t have a bar out there already) you can place a temporary bar to dispense alcohol from the area. If you are using a temporary bar, make sure it does not block any fire exits or adversely affect people getting in and out of the outdoor area in the event of an emergency.

Additionally, if you are intending to increase use of outdoor areas you should be mindful of the impact it could have on neighbours and implement appropriate risk assessments. See below for more on this point.

Checking your Premises Licences & Staff Training

During the Euros, the responsible authorities may carry out checks of licensed premises. It is always best to engage with the authorities at an early stage and take cognisance of any advice they give.

Review your premises licence and check the conditions including any that restrict your operation such as restrictions on admission of children or use of outdoor areas.

Ensure all the conditions and timings on the premises licence are being complied with, for example, if notices are required ensure these are prominently displayed, to avoid potential for enforcement action. Check the premises licence has the correct individual named as the DPS.

Before the Euros begin, it is advisable to undertake refresher training of staff members. You should go through the terms of your premises licence with staff and door supervisors, where relevant, and ensure that all are aware of the requirements placed upon them.

Staff should be able to implement the age verification policy,  recognise the effects of alcohol and spot early signs of customers becoming drunk, while also being able to recognise when assistance schemes, such as Ask Angela, are required.

Risk Assessments,  Measures for increased footfall

You need to think about how the games may impact your existing trade to ensure that the summer sporting events along with what is usually an already busy summer trading period can co-exist harmoniously and a safe and fun environment is maintained for all.

There may already be conditions on your premises licence stipulating requirements to provide for door staff or use polycarbonate or plastic glassware  (whether indoors, outdoors, or both) when showing sporting events or noise mitigation measures when outdoor areas are in use.

Even if there are no such absolute requirements, it is prudent that you conduct your own risk assessment to minimise potential issues. Consider the need for door staff (and numbers), use of polycarbonate/ plastic glassware, managing the wind down period and how you will control dispersal at the end of the night.  In terms of outdoor area use,  consider a noise management plan to help reduce the risk of noise complaints and potential enforcement action including consideration of the positioning of any speakers, stationing staff in outdoor areas to monitor customers and noise levels to prevent nuisance and problems from escalating, alongside ensuring closing of doors and windows to prevent noise escape. Consider also liaising with your neighbours prior to the tournament and providing a phone number so they can call the manager direct in the event they have any issues.

Make sure your risk assessment is documented and kept on site to show the police and licensing authority officers that you have thought about risks and taken any appropriate steps to address risks identified.


Many operators will be welcoming families to their pub to watch the Euros. However, remember that under licensing law children under 16 cannot be in premises where alcohol is the main sales driver (licensed premises defined as “exclusively or primarily used for the sale and consumption of alcohol”) unless accompanied by an adult over 18. On top of this restriction there may also be conditions attached to a pub’s premises licence that impose further restrictions on children e.g. children not being permitted after a certain time or restricted in parts of the pub (such as the bar area).

Your staff should be mindful that under the law there are various offences around children and alcohol in licensed premises including selling alcohol to someone under 18, or knowingly allowing someone under 18 to consume alcohol in licensed premises or for an adult to buy alcohol on behalf of someone under 18 (known as a proxy sale).  Note however there is an exception to these offences for 16- and 17-year-olds, who are permitted to consume beer, wine or cider with a table meal if they’re accompanied by someone over 18 and the drink is purchased by someone over 18.

Staffing , Employing under 18s and Personal Licences

Hopefully it will be a busy summer for many pubs, and you may want to consider employing additional staff and that may include under 18s. Although you can employ children under-18s to work in licensed premises (subject to any local by-laws and certain restrictions under working regulations, further details on the link here), if someone under 18 is going to be selling alcohol and dispensing behind the bar each and every sale needs to be specifically approved by a responsible person (the premise licence holder, DPS or someone over 18 authorised to make approvals on their behalf). This can be operationally onerous, but it’s an offence if you don’t do it.  The only exception is where the sale of alcohol by someone under 18 is made in an area set aside for meals, like a restaurant area, where alcohol is only sold to someone having a meal.

As part of staff management, you may also want to consider additional members of staff alongside your DPS (such as duty managers) obtaining a personal licence so that not only are they specifically authorised to sell alcohol, but they can also authorise others working with them to sell alcohol.

The upcoming Euros are a fantastic opportunity for the licensed trade. Whether Gareth leads England all the way or Scotland are the tournament surprise package, it is safe to say we all hope for a successful period for the licensed trade!

For additional information on how our licensing solicitors can help you, please feel free to contact the team or here.

Important: The information provided in this guide is for general information only and is not intended to be or constitute legal or other professional advice. You should seek legal advice before acting or relying upon any information contained in this guide.  

The information in this guide was published at the date stated and may be subject to change after that date.

Poppleston Allen disclaims all liability in respect of actions taken or not taken based on any or all of the contents of this guide.

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