Published: Friday, 21st Jun 2019

A national campaign is raising awareness of a service that we all rely on but is often overlooked.

NLWNational Licensing Week 2019 (June 17 -21) aims to promote the work that local authorities to do to enforce the law and ensure businesses and events are safe for the public.

Whether buying a pint in your local, ordering a late-night takeaway or jumping in a taxi, Bolton Council’s licensing team plays a crucial role in protecting consumers.

But despite the importance of licensing, most people do not know the part it plays in regulating everything from pet shops to tattoo parlours.

In 2018 alone, the council licensing team received 1,157 new applications under the Licensing Act 2003 and 152 under the Gambling Act 2005.

As well as carrying out regular inspections of all licensed premises, the council also investigated 425 complaints from the public last year.

Licensing is also responsible for making sure public events run safely and smoothly, covering everything from school summer fetes to major events like the recent Rod Stewart concert at the University of Bolton Stadium.

But licensing is not just about the council ensuring that Bolton’s businesses meet the required legal standards, it’s also about working together for the benefit of the whole community.

A number of successful partnership initiatives have been developed between the council and license holders of all kinds.

These include the introduction of town centre taxi marshals on Saturday nights and a campaign to make night-time revellers aware of the importance of using licensed vehicles.

Bolton Council’s Executive Cabinet Member for Environmental Regulatory Services, Cllr Anne Galloway, said:

“Licensing is one of those valuable public services that we all rely on but don’t always notice.

“Whether booking a private hire journey or attending a community event, all of it is made possible thanks to the hard work of the council’s licensing teams.

“The vast majority of businesses in Bolton work closely with the council to ensure they comply with the law and give their customers the best and safest service possible.

“The small minority that choose to flout the law should be aware that we have robust measures in place to protect the public and hold those responsible to account.”