Gerald Gouriet > Francis Taylor Building > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Francis Taylor Building
Francis Taylor Building


Gerald’s licensing practice is principally in alcohol & entertainment, taxi and gambling licensing. He appears at first-instance before licensing committees and magistrates’ courts throughout England and Wales, before licensing boards in Scotland, and also at Gambling Commission panel hearings. On appeal he appears before the First and Second Tier Tribunals, the High Court and the Court of Appeal.

His clients include: The Dorchester Hotel; Tottenham Hotspur Football Club; The Football Pools Ltd; Trust Inns Ltd; Mitchells & Butlers; The Royal Opera House; The Albert Hall; John Lewis; Waitrose; The British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA); Caesar’s Palace (Las Vegas); Cashino Gaming Ltd; Paddy Power; Ladbrokes; Corals; and William Hill. He was successful in obtaining gaming licences for the last of the great 1968 Act Casinos (against formidable opposition from existing operators) in Liverpool, Middlesbrough, Birmingham and Huddersfield; climaxing with the grant, on appeal, of the Hippodrome Casino in Leicester Square.

Gerald acts for the London Taxi Drivers Association (LDTA) and was heavily involved in its ongoing objections to the renewal of Uber’s London licence. In addition, he has recently advised and appeared for a number of taxi and PHV trade organisations throughout England, as well as individual licensed drivers and operators in appeals against regulatory action taken by committees of local authorities.

He is much sought after by licensing authorities and the licensing trade for his clear and forthright advice. Recent clients include Manchester City Council, Winchester City Council, the City of Wolverhampton, Westminster City Council, and miscellaneous trade bodies in Wakefield, York and Greater London.

Gerald studied piano, conducting and composition at the Royal College of Music, then read for the Bar. Having been in practice for over 15 years he spent the greater part of the 1990s in Hollywood where he composed the musical scores for some 18 films, including “Madame Sousatzka”, for which he received a Golden Globe nomination, and “A Question of Attribution” by Alan Bennett, for which he received an Ivor Novello nomination.  He returned to the Bar in 1999 and took silk in 2006.

Gerald’s personal website can be viewed here.


Called 1974. Contributor to ‘Paterson’s Licensing Acts’.

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Licensing

Within: Leading Silks -

Gerald Gouriet QC

Francis Taylor Building

One of the finest practitioners operating in this area.

Francis Taylor Building ‘is clearly the leading licensing set with some of the most famous names in the Industry. It has unrivalled depth in the licensing and regulatory field‘, according to one satisfied client. ‘Top classGerald Gouriet QC has acted on high-profile cases in the taxi business in addition to acting on numerous cases involving licences in the entertainment/clubs fields. He acted for the council in Wigan Council v Revolution Bars Appeal on the refusal of a premises licence – the case was successfully concluded when the parties agreed on compromise conditions. With equally deep expertise, David Matthias QC has acted on a number of cases that have gone to appeal, including to the Supreme Court. Of late, he acted for the council in R (on the application of We Love Hackney Ltd) v London Borough of Hackney – a challenge by way of judicial review to the legality of Hackney’s new Licensing Policy by a local pressure group. Jeremy Philips QC handles a range of cases involving the licensing of entertainment venues of all types, taxi hire matters, and gambling including online. Of late he acted for Hackney LB in resisting the appeal by La Morna Jazz Lounge against the revocation of a late night bar licence. Gary Grant is in demand for both his expertise and ‘brilliant‘ advocacy; he acted for Secret Group Ltd in obtaining a new premises licence for its secret cinema operation which attracted very substantial objections. The ‘smooth advocacy and non-adversarial but firm’ approach of James Rankin is also noted. His work includes representing West Midlands Police in the high-profile and heavily contested case concerning the eventual closure and revocation of the licence of the Arabian Nites Shisha Lounge.  

Regional Bar > North Eastern Circuit > Regulatory, health and safety, and licensing

At Trinity ChambersCharles Holland specialises in licensing and represents the full range of interested parties in such cases. Notable recent work has included several taxi licensing matters, such as his recent representation of an interested party in judicial review proceedings brought by United Cabbies Group against the decision to grant a private hire vehicle operator’s licence to Uber, in which Holland acted as a junior to Gerald Gouriet QC. Other key sectors of the licensing practice include firearms, entertainment and alcohol, betting and gaming, and scrap metal dealerships.