Based in Reading, Blandy & Blandy LLP has specialist experience in venue licensing for major sporting and entertainment venues. The team advises national and international clients regarding operational, regulation and compliance issues. Practice head Sue Dowling is a renowned leader in this field, handling general safety issues, as well as alcohol and regulated entertainment licensing matters across the leisure, hospitality and sports sectors. The team prides itself on its ‘hands on’ approach and regularly represents clients in hearings.
Licensing in South East
‘Sue Dowling is highly knowledgeable and efficient.’
‘The team are diligent, responsive and a pleasure to deal with.’
‘Sue Dowling’s clear understanding of the complex licensing environment has been invaluable to us in securing and maintaining the licencing structure we need to operate in. She is quick to identify and deal with key points and issues.’
‘Sue Dowling is very experienced in the area of licensing and is always responsive and helpful.’
Tottenham Hotspur Ltd/Tottenham Hotspur Football & Athletic Co Limited
The FA Group/ Wembley National Stadium Ltd
Rugby Football Union (RFU)
AEG Europe/The O2
Royal Academy of Arts
Marylebone Cricket Club (in relation to Lord’s Cricket Ground)
Henley Royal Regatta
John Gaunt & Partners
With a base in Gosport, John Gaunt & Partners is well established in the South East and continues to be recognised for its specialist licensing expertise. The team handles a broad range of licensing and regulatory matters for national and international clients across the leisure, retail and hospitality sectors. In addition to his licensing expertise, practice leader Jon Wallsgrove also advises clients on regulatory compliance and criminal investigations associated with the operation of licensed premises. In April 2020, the practice completed the transition process involving the retirement of John Gaunt and Kate Redford.
‘Jon Wallsgrove has exceptional knowledge and insight in the field of licensing.’
‘Great team of solicitors. Efficient, proactive, attention to detail and highly professional. They have substantial experience and expertise in the licensing field.’
Marks & Spencer
Odeon Cinema Group
Millennium and Copthorne Hotels
The Devonshire Group
Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew
Wulf & Lamb
David Lloyds Leisure
The Goodwood Estate
British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
Milton and Mortimer Ltd
Hotel Co 51 UK
- Supported Marks & Spencer in a significant project, converting tills in store to self-service checkouts in line with the client’s “build” programme.
- Supported the growth of Whitebread Group PLC across all sectors including the Premier Inn and secured licenses for hotels from the Isle of Wight to Thurso and from Aberystwyth to Great Yarmouth.
- Assisted Goodwood in securing a variation to allow a drive-in cinema at the Motor Circuit, taking into consideration the licensing objectives, public health concerns and government guidance.
Located in Southampton, the long-established team at Trethowans LLP advises on a range of licensing matters in the retail, hospitality and sport sectors. Led by Karen Lush, the practice handles all premises and personal licensing and has experience acting for large national restaurant estates. Sandra Graham advises on planning matters in relation to licensed premises, as well as alcohol, entertainment and noise-related licensing issues. Julia Palmer is recognised in handling betting and gaming cases. The team also has experience in representing clients in court.
Other key lawyers:
Sandra Graham; Julia Palmer
Nando’s Chickenland Ltd
Pizza Hut UK Ltd
Chelsea Football Club PLC
MOD Pizza Ltd
Goals Soccer Centres
Poole Leisure Limited
Beach House (Mudeford) Limited
Located in Reading, the licensing practice at Field Seymour Parkes LLP sits within the wider property disputes team, and advises on premises and property licensing matters. Led by associate Mark Banham, the practice can draw on support from the firm's commercial and contentious property lawyers.
‘The firm has established a niche licensing practice, and is more than capable in matching the better known licensing firms in terms of service and value for money. The advantage that they have is that they offer a one-stop shop, dealing as they do with planning and commercial conveyancing as well as licensing law.’
‘Mark Banham is a stand out associate. He is extremely competent and has a thorough knowledge of licensing law. Moreover, he is extremely practical and a good tactician.’