Occasional licence

You need to have an occasional licence if you intend to temporarily sell alcohol on unlicensed premises (or in some cases club premises).

Before you apply find out more about applying for an occasional licence:

View our guidance on occasional licences (pdf 163KB) to find out more.

Who can apply

An application for an occasional licence can be made by:

  • the holder of a premises licence
  • the holder of a personal licence
  • the representative of a voluntary organisation (you should give details of the organisation)
  • a club

For voluntary organisations and clubs, within a 12 month period we cannot grant more than (provided that there are no more than 56 days in a period of 12 months where your premises has an occasional licence in effect):

  • 4 occasional licences each lasting more than 4 days
  • 12 occasional licences each lasting less than 4 days

There are no restrictions on the number of occasional licences which may be applied for over a 12 month period by the holder of a premises licence or a personal licence.

Events requiring occasional licence

Generally, activities such as dances, discos, dinner dances, wedding receptions, parties where a disco or band is provided, or beer tents at a larger event such as a gala or music festival, are acceptable for granting an occasional licence. However this is not an exhaustive list.

Duration of the licence

14 days is the maximum duration for an occasional licence.

If the licence is requested for more than 1 day, the Licensing Board may decide that this is not an 'occasion' at all.

Application fee

The cost of occasional licence application is £10. Cheques should be made payable to Aberdeenshire Council. The application fee is not refundable.

What to include in your application

Your application must include:

  • detailed layout plan of the premises
  • description of the proposed activities 

The more information you provide will help us decide whether your application can be granted quickly, or whether your case will have to wait until the next meeting of the local Licensing Board.

How to apply

You can apply for occasional licence in paper or online.

Timings - when to apply

You should apply giving as much time as possible, and at least 6 weeks prior to the date the licence is required.

If you submit your application 4 weeks or less before to the date requested we may reject it. Applications made between 4 and 6 weeks prior to the date requested are likely to be classed as 'late applications'. This will mean that future late applications might be rejected.

You should always give plenty of notice because your application must be advertised.

Apply in paper

To apply in paper complete occasional licence application form (pdf 63KB). When filling in the form you will need to provide information about five licensing objectives relating to each event to prove you comply with them:

  • Preventing crime and disorder
  • Securing public safety
  • Preventing public nuisance
  • Protecting and improving public health
  • Protecting children from harm

Please send your completed submission to:

Aberdeenshire Council
Legal and Governance
Arduthie Road
AB39 2DQ

Apply online

You can apply for an occasional licence online on GOV.UK website however we may require to request additional information due to the limitations of the online system. 

Application process

Once we’ve received your application, we will consult with Police Scotland and Licensing Standards Officer. If neither make adverse comment, and the application is within the Board's Policy, the application can be granted under delegated powers. This means that the decision to grant the licence is made by the clerk, rather than wait for the next Licensing Board meeting.

View your local Licensing Board meeting dates:

We will also advertise the licence for 1 week to allow members of the public to make any objections or representations.

If there is any adverse comment, or if the application is outside the Board's Policy, the application must be referred to a hearing of the Licensing Board. You will be told about the hearing and will be able to make representations in favour of your application.

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