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PA podcast: Suraj Desor, discuss temporary event notices – TENs licence

Temporary event notices, what they are, their limitations and some top tips

In this episode licensing Solicitor, Suraj Desor, gives us a guide to temporary event notices (TENs licence) including what they are, if they have any limitations and also rounds off with some useful tips and advice

Click here to listen to the podcast

Find the transcript below:


Hello and welcome back to the Poppleston Allen podcast. Here, we discuss a range of alcohol and gambling licencing topics to help someone with a limited grasp of licencing, such as myself, gain a little insight into what it’s all about.

Today, I’m joined by one of our specialist licencing solicitors who resides in our Nottingham office, Suraj Desor. Suraj deals with licencing matters for a range of our clients and he’s here today to discuss temporary event notices; what they are; If they have any limitations and he’ll also round up by giving some tips and advice about them.

Hi, Suraj.

So starting off Suraj, for those who don’t know, what is a temporary event notice?



So temporary event notices known as TENs licences are essentially temporary permissions for licensable activities. They were introduced to make provision for small-scale one-off events where you’d normally have required a premises licence to undertake any licensable activity. Those being sale of alcohol; regulated entertainment such as live music, recorded music; or late night refreshment, such as hot food and drink provided between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m.. So, for example, a TENs licence could be used to licence a marquee in a garden of a pub or a local hall which is not covered under a premises licence. And commonly they’re used in situations where premises licences don’t quite cover the needs of a particular function on a particular night. So, for example, where you wish to trade later hours than what you’ve got on your premises licence, so for a particular event such as a birthday party or for the festive period, for example, like now.



Very topical.



Exactly. Or Bank holiday weekends or where you’re showing high profile sporting events such as the boxing or something like that. So, we submit TENs licence throughout the year on behalf of our clients. And given the impact of the pandemic on hospitality, operators will no doubt be looking at ways to maximise business and attract customers and with events and later trading, particularly over Christmas and New Year, the festive period, TENs are a helpful tool to achieve that.



Yeah, so TENs sounds like they are very, very useful for operators, and they actually sound like they could be too good to be true, to be honest. Are they governed by any strict procedures or limitations?



You’re quite right Dom. There are strict procedures and limitations. Given TENs are intended as temporary permissions, their use is governed by certain limits. So, in terms of the procedure, it requires you to complete an application and submit this to the licencing authority and includes an individual applying.

You have to provide details as to location, the description of the event, the sort of permissions you’re looking for for the event. And then there’s a council fee of £21 for each temporary event notice as well.

And we’d usually advise issuing TENs electronically via the government’s website, gov.uk, or licencing authorities have their own online facility as well. Where a TENs licence isn’t issued electronically, the council’s licencing team have to be provided the temporary event notice.

It also needs to be sent to the police and the environmental health officer at the same time and on receipt, they have a period of three working days to object and give notice of the objection. There are other strict rules on giving notice for a TEN, so what’s called a standard TENs licence must be received by the licencing authority at least ten working days before the event and ten working days excludes the day the notice is received and the first day of the event. If there’s less than ten working days before the event, you can apply for what’s called a late TENs licence, but this must be received by the authorities no less than five working days before the event. But essentially, if the notice is properly issued, and no counter notice is issued, then you don’t require any further permission and the authorisation is granted by the licencing authority. They simply send you an acknowledgement notice, sign it and give it back to you, and you can go ahead with your temporary event in line with the permissions you’ve sought.



So, you mentioned about the police having, was it three days did you say, to object?



That’s right. For a standard ten, yeah



So, what actually happens if they do object?



So, it is not only the police, it could be the environmental health as well. So, they both have three working days to object to the temporary event notice. And if they do object, you’re entitled to a hearing before the licencing committee which must be held before the event unless some sort of agreement can be reached with those that have objected. So with the police or the environmental health officer. Now where there’s an objection from police or environmental health, an agreement could be reached on modifying the TEN, such as changing intended hours or the duration. And also, the licencing authority can impose conditions from the existing premises licence, if there is one in place for the venue, which will then have effect on the TEN itself. The key point though is unlike standard tens, where you’ve issued a late ten, if anyone objects, the ten is automatically rejected and there is no right to a hearing. So essentially, if you’re relying on that for your event, you may not be able to continue with your event as planned.



Yes, so it’s crucial to plan ahead then in plenty of time.



Exactly. Spot on.



So that’s the procedure, as you mentioned. You also mentioned about strict limitations earlier on. Could you give us some more detail around what those strict limitations are?



So, if you’re a personal licence holder, you can submit 50 TENs within a calendar year, ten of which can be late TENs. And if you’re not a personal licence holder, it’s greatly reduced, It’s 5, 2 of which can be late TENs. And you can have up to 15 TENs per calendar year for a particular premises, and they can’t last more than a duration of 168 hours, which is seven days for each temporary event notice. And in total, you can’t have more than 21 days temporary event notices within one calendar year for a premises.

And even if an event starts, say, for example, on one day and finishes the next morning, say you’re going on a Friday night from 11:00 p.m. until Saturday morning, 1:00 a.m. That will be considered two days within your 21 day limit for the year. So, it’s worth noting that.

Now in terms of maximum number of people attending an event where a TEN is used, the maximum number is 499. So if you’re having more than 499, you’ll need to apply for a formal premises licence.

And I mean, examples of where that’s used is sort of your typical music festival and in those sorts of situations we’d normally apply for a full premises licence for those types of events as opposed to a TEN, because there’s likely to be more people attending those sorts of events.

A couple of final points in terms of limitations. There needs to be at least 24 hours between each event. So if you’re putting in a temporary event notice, you need to make sure there’s 24 hours between one temporary notice and another one being issued for a particular premises. And that applies to the individual who’s applied or a connected person. Also, in terms of the individual who applies, they must be over 18.

What I would say, though, is given the impact of the pandemic and to assist hospitality businesses; the government have increased these limits temporarily for the next two years to increase the allowance for TENs from 15 to 20 within the calendar year and increase the maximum number of days that TENs are allowed for a particular premises from 21 to 26 days within the calendar year. And that’s for next year, 2022 and the following year, 2023.



Thank you, Suraj. I’ve just got one last question for you. Are there any tips or words of advice or anything like that that you would offer to operators that are looking to use TENs?



Yes. Firstly, just check whether you need a TEN. If you’ve got an existing premises licence, just check if you’ve got any permissions on your licence that would allow you to operate for the particular event. Sometimes on premises licences, you have what are called non-standard timings for certain days.

So, Sunday’s preceding a bank holiday Monday, you might have extended hours on your licence. And if you’re looking to have an event for those particular days, you might already have permission on your licence for extended hours.

So just make sure you check whether you actually need a TEN. Now, in terms of other tips, Plan ahead. Apply in plenty of time so that you don’t sort of fall foul of the timescales in terms of a standard TEN and a late TEN, which we mentioned earlier on.

If you’re doing anything unusual outside of your standard style of operation, consider speaking with the police licencing team on your proposal beforehand to make sure that they’re on side and they’re happy with what you’re looking to do. Also, be clear on what you’re applying for, the permissions you’re seeking and the hours. TENs aren’t always as simple as they appear. And if you get it wrong, it could mean that your events cancelled. So, for example, where you’ve got a premises licence that currently permits you to trade until, say, midnight on a Friday and you wish to serve alcohol and have licenced activities for a bit longer into the following morning, make sure that your TENs application refers to the right date. So, if you’re going from Friday night into Saturday morning and you’ve already got permission for that whole Friday night, your TEN would want to go from Saturday morning early in the morning to say, let’s say you’re going to 1:00 in the morning, so it would be from the start of the morning to 1:00 a.m. on Saturday, rather than on the Friday, so just make you make sure you’re clear about that.

Also, make sure you know who’s applying for the ten because it will be in the name of an individual. If, for whatever reason, the holder of that TEN is no longer employed at the premises and are unlikely to agree to remain legally responsible for the event. You might need to reissue the TEN and that could obviously affect your timelines as well. It’s therefore best to ensure that the individual who’s named on the TEN is still going to be employed at the premises at the event if it does go ahead.



Thank you for that update, Suraj. It’s very timely as we’re heading into the Christmas period, and I’m sure a lot of operators will be looking to apply for TENs, and it’s also great news about those extensions for the next two years as well.

TENs can be tricky, though, so if you want more information, you can head to our website popall.co.uk. We’ve got a range of guides and also, we write about TENs a lot due to us being a licencing firm.

You can also contact Suraj directly through the website if you have any more questions. I’m sure you can bug him on that.



Happy to answer those.



Until next time, thank you for listening.

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