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Local Government Association and Institute of Licensing: Training standard published Published Date: 10/12/2023

The Local Government Association (LGA) and Institute of Licensing (IoL) want to drive consistently high standards in licensing. This document is designed to set out what the LGA and the IoL believe to be a basic level of licensing committee member training, although this does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. It also signposts to additional opportunities for further development that members of licensing committees may wish to consider. 

We would expect all members with a role in determining licensing matters to complete the items shown in the basic standard of training below before sitting in a determining position, to ensure they have a solid understanding of the licensing process and are able to discharge their duties to a good standard.

 Basic standard


  • Where councils have the budget, ongoing attendance at licensing conferences, such as the IoL’s national training conference or the LGA’s annual licensing conference, is desirable to hear about live issues in licensing and best practice. The IoL also run a number of courseswhich focus on different elements of licensing in greater detail and may be helpful for a more in depth understanding. Additionally, the LGA occasionally hosts free webinars on different aspects of licensing and will consider arranging webinars on topics suggested by our members. 
  • Attend theLGA Licensing Leadership Essentials Course, which is aimed at Chairs and Vice-chairs of committees and focuses on how a good committee is run. This is a two-day interactive course which costs £200 (this includes the course, accommodation and meals). 
  • If councils are members of the IoL, councillors should consider attending regional IoL meetings to hear from speakers on all areas of licensing and to network with licensing practitioners across the region. This is free to IoL members.
  • Sign up to receive the IoL’s email updates (free subscription), which includes the latest news, and the IoL’s LINK magazineand Journal of Licensing to stay abreast of key developments in licensing. Licensing updates are also issued occasionally by many legal firms such as Cornerstone Barristers, Francis Taylor Building, and John Gaunt and Partners Licensing Solicitors to name a few. These are generally free. The LGA also has a free ‘Community Safety’ bulletin, which covers key licensing updates. 
  • Meet with local best practice groups, such as Purple Flag, Pub Watch or Best Bar None, to understand what the groups do and the benefits they bring to the day and night-time economies.  
  • Occasionally participate in visits with licensing officers in the night-time economy area to observe partnership working schemes in action and better understand how your night-time economy operates
  • Meet with local licensees to understand the challenges they face.