Licensable activities


Any retail sale of alcohol requires a licence (selling liqueur chocolates does not require a licence although they may not be sold to under 16s.)

The supply of alcohol by a club or to a member of a club requires that the club must have a Club Registration Certificate. Only qualifying clubs that are suitably constituted, such as working men's clubs, can make use of such certificates. (see Club Premises Certificates)

If you include alcohol as part of a ticket price (e.g. cheese and wine), this is still a retail sale.

Late night refreshment

The provision of late night refreshment means the supply of hot food or drink, between 11.00pm and 5.00am to members of the public either on or from any premises for consumption either on or off the premises. Hot means that it has been heated to above ambient temperature or that, after it has been sold, it can be heated on the premises. This means that any restaurant, pub, snack bar, chip shop, 24 hour supermarket, etc supplying hot food after 11.00 pm needs a Premises Licence.


  • where hot food or drink is supplied to members of recognised clubs;
  • someone staying at a hotel or guest house etc; by an employer to employees; or guests of the above;
  • drinks (not food) from vending machines; free food or drink; food or drink supplied by registered charities.


Regulated entertainment includes any of the following:

  • the performance of a play (this means any piece where a dramatic role is acted out)
  • an exhibition of a film (this means any display of moving pictures)
  • an indoor sporting event
  • boxing or wrestling entertainment
  • a performance of live music
  • any playing of recorded music
  • a performance of dance
  • or entertainment of a similar description to live music, recorded music or dance
  • there are some exemptions in respect of live music
    GOV.UK - simple guide to regulated entertainment
    (Note: The entertainment must take place in the presence of an audience - however small).


  • films shown in museums or art galleries as part of an exhibit, or for the purposes of advertisement or education
  • music, provided it is incidental to a non-licensable activity e.g. a fashion show
  • showing live television programmes
  • entertainment, such as music or a play as part of a religious meeting or service or at a place of public religious worship (e.g. nativity plays during a service anywhere, choral works or a play in a church even where not part of a service)
  • garden fetes
  • Morris dancing (or similar) or a performance of unamplified live music as an integral part of such dancing
  • regulated entertainment provided on vehicles in motion (e.g. carnivals)

Supplementary information

The playing of recorded music that is incidental to other activities that are not themselves the provision of regulated entertainment will be exempt. A jukebox in a pub will not necessarily have to be authorised unless, for instance, a dance floor is also provided or it is not incidental. A Disc Jockey playing to a public audience would amount to regulated entertainment and would therefore need to be authorised.

Contact us

Contact Licensing

Call our Licensing Customer Service Team on 0300 123 5015 during office hours, 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday, if you're unable to use our forms.

Licensing Team
Cheshire East Council

Regulatory Services and Health C/O
Delamere House, Delamere Street


Page last reviewed: 13 July 2020