Fury at personal licence laws

Over 250 people in South Ayrshire have had their personal licences revoked due to strict Government laws.

The laws from the Scottish Government mean South Ayrshire Council bosses had to take away the licences, which are necessary if you work in a pub or other premises which sells alcohol, from 263 people across the area and remove their names from the register.

The rules mean that those holders who have lost their licence this month cannot re-apply for another five years.

The laws mean a five year ban for anyone in Scotland who failed to take personal licence refresher courses and submit documents to local councils before the end of last year. And the laws have resulted in one Girvan licencee already being forced to let go an employee.

The licencee, who did not wish to be named, told the Gazette: “These laws have mean I have had to let go one of my bar staff as they hadn’t handed in the relevant documents in time to ensure they had their personal licence renewed.

“The laws mean that I would have to be there as a personal licence holder to supervise someone who wasn’t licenced to serve drink so I thought unfortunately, that there didn’t seem to be much point in keeping an employee on under these draconian laws.”

The rules have meant up to a staggering 10,000 personal licences have been revoked across Scotland putting many jobs and livelihoods at serious risk.

It is understood that the Scottish Government do plan to look at reviewing the laws which could potentially remove the five year penalty.

However, the new rules may not come into force until the summer this year leaving many personal licence holders facing an uncertain future over the next few months.

The calls to renew personal licences have regulalry came from Catrina Andrew, South Ayrshire Council’s licencing standards officer.

She warned at a meeting of the licensing board in November that only 307 personal licence holders in South Ayrshire had completed refresher training out of an anticipated 663 licence holders.

Any personal licence holder who was issued with a licence on or before the 1st September 2009 should have completed retraining by 31st August 2014.

They were also required to provide the board with a certificate to prove training has taken place and also to hand in their original personal licence for updating. Those 263 holders who failed to do so have had their licences revoked.