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Francis Taylor Building, Leo Charalambides, London, ENGLAND

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Leo Charalambides

Work 020 7353 8415
Francis Taylor Building (Francis Taylor Building)


Leo joined FTB in January 2012, where he brings his, well-regarded, extensive expertise and experience of local government licensing to the licensing group. Here he will continue to advise and represent a wide range of operators, local authorities and interested parties across all aspects of licensing. For example in One Step v Brighton & Hove City Council (April, 2010) Leo successfully defended the decision of the local licensing authority not to grant a further premises licence for a new off-licence in the stress area. While in The Knightsbridge Residents Association v (1) The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea (2) Mamounia Lounge Knightsbridge Ltd (October, 2010), acting for the local residents association Leo successfully challenged the decision of the RBKC to grant the Mamounia Lounge hours beyond the core hours set out in the RBKC statement of licensing policy; he also secured an order for the RBKC to pay in full the resident’s association costs. Leo is regularly instructed to represent operators from small family run businesses to multinational companies. He is, for example, currently instructed on the vast majority of contested petrol forecourt convenience store applications with three appeals pending which could have a major impact on the scope and application of such applications. In March 2012 he successfully represented two garage forecourt sites in two test reviews where the West Yorkshire Police sought to review the two premises licences on the basis of allegations said to amount to breach of s 176 (Prohibition of Alcohol Sales at Garages). When working with operators Leo takes a practical and hands-on approach in his advisory work; he routinely works with and advises clients from ‘concept to completion’. On-site meetings and conferences with clients are often conducted at the time of purchase or re-fit so as to contribute to the smooth processing of any future licensing application. This advice includes the impact of other regulatory regimes (planning & land use, building regs. etc) to the proposed project. Additionally Leo advised and represents local licensing authorities. He recently, successfully represented the London Borough of Tower Hamlets in setting aside a decision of a district judge to award costs against the local authority in the sum of £21, 986: Tower Hamlets LBC v Ashburn Estates Ltd (t/a The Troxy) [2011] EWHC 3504 (Admin). In the case the court also considered the competing interests and in particular the wider community interests that need to be considered by a local licensing authority on the receipt of a proper compromise offer. He is well known for his knowledge and expertise in sex establishment licensing, he continues to advise operators, the police and local authorities. He has particular experience of drafting and developing sex establishment policies for local authorities. Inevitably Leo’s licensing practice has developed to include wider aspects of associated local government law. His knowledge of Licensing Law is also used and applied in the context of civil disputes. Leo successfully represented the Claimant in his action for possession of the iconic and long established Kings Cross News Stand. Direct public access: in appropriate cases Leo is able to accept instructions on the basis of direct public access. Publications/lectures: Leo is a contributor to Halsbury’s Laws of England, Vol 69, Local Government (5th edition, Butterworths, 2009). Leo has been closely involved in the development and publication of the Institute of Licensing: Journal of Licensing. The first issue of the Journal was published in November 2011 with Leo as the editor. Leo continues to as editor of the Journal of Licensing which is published by the IoL three times a year. Leo is well known for lecturing and training on all aspects of licensing law. In particular he has worked with the Institute of Licensing at regional and national level. He has been commended for his series of workshops and follow-up lectures on sex establishment licensing – this was recently adapted for a presentation in Northern Ireland. He is currently developing a training workshop on Pedlars and Street Trading. Leo accepts instructions to prepare and present bespoke training programs on all aspects of licensing law.


Called 1998; Inner Temple.


IoL (Institute of Licensing); Leo is Vice-Chair of the London Region of the Institute of Licensing.


MA (Lon); LLM (Lon).

London Bar


Within: Licensing – Leading juniors

Leo Charalambides - Francis Taylor BuildingA well-regarded, specialist licensing lawyer.

Within: Licensing

Francis Taylor Building is ‘a set that really knows its stuff’. Members are recommended as barristers who ‘get results on the most difficult cases’. Notable highlights include Jeremy Phillips QC representing Taxify in its application to obtain an operating licence for its ride-sharing app in London. Gary Grant QC has successfully acted for numerous licensees in obtaining or maintaining their licences in the restrictive Westminster area. Junior members Leo Charalambides and Annabel Graham Paul have been acting for McDonald’s in licensing its franchises.

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