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Personal licences

If you have a personal licence, you can sell alcohol. You can also authorise someone else to sell alcohol.

You need a personal licence if you want to be a designated premises supervisor (DPS). The DPS will normally be the person who has day-to-day responsibility for running the premises.

There may be a number of personal licence holders working at a premises but there can only be one DPS. The DPS must be appointed by the premises licence holder (who may hold both positions).

Places that sell alcohol need to have both a premises licence and a DPS.

Before you apply

What qualifications do you need for a personal licence?

Before applying for a personal licence, you need to do a training course and exam to get a Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders.

This training normally takes one day.

Personal licences for people who live in Hackney

A personal licence is given out by the Council  for the area you live in. If you work in Hackney but live somewhere else in the UK, apply to your local council.

You can use your personal licence to sell alcohol, or authorise the sale of alcohol, anywhere with a premises licence in England or Wales.

Apply for a personal licence

If you live in Hackney, you can apply for a personal licence in person or by post. Processing the application costs £37.

As part of your application, you’ll need to include a basic criminal background check.

If you don’t have a recent one, you can do one through the government’s Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). It costs £25 and takes about 14 days.

If you want to do your background check in another way, they normally cost less than £30, but might take longer.

Getting your personal licence usually takes a month, including the time it takes to take a Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders course and the for a DBS background check to be done.

Apply now

Read the guidance notes before applying:

Send to / go to: Licensing Service, Hackney Service Centre, 1 Hillman Street, E8 1DY. 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

You should send / bring:

  • £37 – pay by cheque (made out to The London Borough of Hackney), postal order or cash (in person only)
  • a copy of your Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders qualification, if applying by post. If applying in person, please bring the original
  • a completed application form
  • 2 identical passport sized photos. 1 photo should be signed on the back by someone who can certify documents eg a solicitor, notary, a person of standing in the community, or any individual with a professional qualification. The signed statement should be ‘I can confirm that this photo is a true likeness of (applicant’s name)’
  • documents showing that you have the right to work in the UK
  • the original of a recent criminal background check
  • a completed LA21 disclosure of convictions form

After you apply

Page updated on: 10 October 2019

Licensing Service


Hackney Service Centre
1 Hillman Street
E8 1DY


Opening times

  • Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm (reception opening hours) Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm (phone calls)