CLUB LAW MANUAL
by Kenneth W Pain, Barrister
Members clubs have long enjoyed special status at law, notably in respect of the supply of alcohol to their members and guests. The Licensing Act 2003, with its focus on the licensing objectives, brings the statutory controls applying to members clubs further into line with those applying to other types of premises, but there remain very important concessions for clubs which meet certain conditions. Those conditions relate to the clubs rules on admission to membership, its good faith, the arrangements for the purchase and supply of alcohol and the management of the clubs finances. Qualifying clubs may seek a club premises certificate under the 2003 Act. The certificate authorises the club to supply alcohol to its members and, if the club wishes, to provide entertainments which fall within the Act.
Clubs already holding club registration certificates granted under the Licensing Act 1964 can take advantage of "grandfather rights" and apply, during the six months beginning on 7 February 2005, for the conversion of their certificates into club premises certificates under the new Act.
In this new short book, Club Law Manual, Kenneth Pain provides a guide not only to the new liquor licensing regime as it affects clubs, but also to matters such as employment, food hygiene, health and safety, public liability, and the relationships of officers and members with their clubs. The contents range from applying for a club premises certificate or to convert an existing certificate, through the statutory controls which apply to clubs, the club rules, temporary events, meetings, officers and trustees, entertainments, and much more besides. Forms, fees, and a template for drawing up a set of club rules are given in appendices. The full contents list is set out overleaf. While the book does not pretend to be exhaustive, the author is confident that most aspects of the law as it affects club management are touched upon.
Club Law Manual is intended to be of use to practitioners, the police and the relevant statutory authorities. It is hoped that it may be sufficiently readable to be of assistance also to those who run and manage clubs.