Q&A Can I trade until midnight?

  • Date: 27 November 2014
  • Source: reproduced from the Publican's Morning Advertiser

Q: I run a small restaurant in a busy town centre. I have started advertising for Christmas bookings and am pleased to have received lots of enquiries. However, my premises licence only allows me to trade until 10.30pm, and most parties would like to stay in for the whole evening, at least until midnight. I am aware I can use Temporary Event Notices to extend my hours, however will I be able to use these every day in the week leading up to Christmas?

A: A Temporary Event Notice (TEN) is a great way to allow your premises to trade a little later for Christmas parties. However, if the TEN is given in respect of the same premises, there must be a gap of at least 24 hours between the end of one TEN and the start of another. This means that you could not have separate TENs for every day of the week leading up to Christmas, as if one finishes at midnight, your next TEN could not begin before midnight the following day.

You could therefore have TENs every other day, or you could consider using one TEN to cover a continuous period of 168 hours to allow parties on consecutive nights. However, this could count towards up to 8 days of your TENs annual quota of 21 days. Remember, if your TEN starts at 10.30pm and finishes later than midnight then although you have only used one TEN, this will count as two days towards your annual quota.

You should also check your premises licence carefully, as many premises licences already have permission to trade later over the Christmas period, negating the need for a TEN.