§ Lord Lester of Herne Hill
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they will include reference to the need to act proportionately in accordance with Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Section 6 of the Human Rights Act 1998 when regulating entertainment under the Licensing Act 2003 and giving guidance under Section 182 of that Act; and [HL5232]
What they consider to be the obligations of local authorities in acting compatibly with the rights of live musicians under Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights when regulating entertainment under the Licensing Act 2003. [HL5233]
§ Lord McIntosh of Haringey
The Government will not regulate entertainment under the provisions of the Licensing Act 2003. Regulation of the use of premises for the provision of regulated entertainment under the Act is a function of the licensing authorities. The guidance which the Secretary of State will issue to licensing authorities under Section 182 of the Licensing Act 2003 and which those authorities must have regard to in discharging their functions under the Act will make clear that conditions attached to all premises licences, including those licences which permit regulated entertainment, must be necessary for the promotion of the licensing objectives and must represent a proportionate reaction to the level of risk which the proposed activities give rise to. The guidance will further make clear that the licensing conditions should be tailored to the characteristics and activities taking place at the premises concerned. It will stress the importance that the conditions are proportionate and that they recognise any significant differences between venues. No specific reference to the convention or the Human Rights Act 1998 is considered necessary.
Local authorities acting as licensing authorities must act compatibly with Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights when discharging their functions under the Licensing Act 2003 by virtue of 185WA their duties under Section 6 of the Human Rights Act 1998. In carrying out their functions under the 2003 Act, the licensing authorities are not concerned with the licensing of individual expression, but are concerned with licensing the premises for the carrying on of the provision of regulated entertainment, such as the performance of live music. Accordingly, their actions in, for instance, attaching conditions to premises licences must be restricted to those which are necessary to promote the licensing objectives and should, therefore, be a proportionate response to the level of risk which the proposed activities give rise to, in this case the provision of regulated entertainment on premises.