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Hearings for Sex Establishment

Before refusing an application, renewal or application to transfer a licence all applicants will be given the opportunity to appear before and be heard by the relevant panel/committee that is responsible for determining the application.

Whilst Schedule 3 does not make explicit provision for objectors to be heard, this Licensing Authority would normally permit this. Although a local authority is under a duty to consider any objection made within 28 days of the application, it has discretion to hear later objections provided the applicant is given the opportunity to deal with those objections.

Persons making written objections will also be informed of the date and time of the panel/committee hearing where they will be invited to address the committee and ask questions relating to the application. All objectors and applicants are reminded that they can if they wish be legally represented at their own expense at the hearing. Alternatively they may if they wish ask a Councillor to represent them.

In determining an application the panel/committee will consider the applicants presentation, the Licensing Authority’s authorised officer report and representation/objections. 

All parties may use witnesses and supporting documentation however, copies of documents and details of witnesses must be submitted to the Licensing Manager a minimum of one working day prior to the hearing. In special circumstances, with approval of all parties, this may be done at the hearing.

If one of the parties wishes to show video/dvd evidence at the hearing they must inform the Licensing Authority 14 days prior to the hearing taking place and where possible provide copies to the Licensing Authority a minimum of seven days prior to the hearing to avoid any unnecessary delays

Officers may view the evidence prior to the hearing and advise the chairman of any sensitive images and will establish whether any party objects to the video/dvd being shown. If an objection is raised then the parties concerned should give their reasons for and against the proposed showing.

The Licensing Authority will consider all the evidence presented to it during the hearing and members may ask questions of officers, applicant and objectors. After the evidence has been presented, all parties will be asked to leave the room to allow for the Licensing Authority to come to a decision on the application.

When a decision is reached the Licensing Authority will at the Hearing inform the applicant and relevant parties of their decision and the reasons for coming to that particular decision. The decision of the Licensing Authority will be confirmed, in writing, to the applicant and objectors attending the Hearing within five working days of the meeting at which the application was considered, giving reasons for the decision.


For more information contact Licensing Unit by telephone: Licensing Services - 01634 337107 or 337108 / Enforcement - 01634 337112 or 337106 or by email: licensing@medway.gov.uk

Write to: Licensing Unit, Medway Council, Gun Wharf, Dock Road, Chatham, Kent ME4 4TR