Positive outcomes of the Act:
- Fewer irresponsible promotions were reported as taking place in pubs and clubs.
- A reduction in the direct sales of alcohol to underage young people.
- The successful establishment of the role of Licensing Standards Officers.
- Giving Licensing Boards the power to review, revoke or suspend licences was thought to be a useful deterrent and a useful sanction against any alcohol outlet guilty of poor practice.
- Improved relationships between Licensing Boards /LSO’s and trade members.
Areas for development:
- Role and functioning of Local Licensing Forums - some evidence that these bodies have stalled.
- The public health objective – the licensing objective that Boards, Forums and LSO’s most struggle to address.
- The larger off-trade sector has largely been unaffected by the Act.
- Better and more consistent data collection at local and national level.
- More guidance and support to be given nationally in relation to the public health objective.
- Scottish Government should continue to consider measures to address the pricing of alcohol – for example press for the introduction of MUP once the judicial process has been fully determined.
- All Licensing Boards to give further thought to the operation and effectiveness of the public health objective.
- National and local datasets to be collected and collated consistently by Boards and LSOs, in order that meaningful comparison can be made of an agreed minimum data set.