Personal Licence

Personal licence holders may authorise the sale of alcohol at premises licensed for that purpose and may also be employed as the Designated Premises Supervisor (DPS) at such premises.

Personal licences last indefinitely, unless forfeited, suspended, revoked or surrendered. A personal licence holder can also serve up to a maximum of 50 temporary event notices in a year.

If you are currently a personal licence holder and have changed your name or address, you need to notify Cornwall Council and return your existing Personal Licence and badge.  An amended licence will be issued to you.

If your personal licence has an expiry date, please see our information about renewal.

The application for the grant of a personal licence consists of:

  • Personal licence application form
  • Disclosure of convictions and declaration
  • Two passport sized photos, one of which must be endorsed as a true likeness (please see 'Photo Specification' below)
  • Licensing qualification certificate - the original certificate must be submitted and will be returned once the application is processed. We CANNOT accept photocopies
  • Basic disclosure of criminal convictions (issued by Disclosure Scotland) - the original certificate must be submitted and will be returned once the application is processed. We CANNOT accept photocopies
  • Application fee of £37 (cheques made payable to Cornwall Council)

Cornwall Council’s Licensing Service offers assistance for all applications under the Licensing Act 2003.

For a fixed fee you can get your application right first time. The benefits to applicants include:-

  • Save time: applications can be delayed due to basic errors
  • Save money: we will help to ensure the process will not need to be re-started; you may avoid incurring additional costs in re-submitting your application
  • Give peace of mind: we will make sure your application is correctly completed
  • Secure: we will ensure your application is electronically submitted and depending on the type of application, serve on the relevant Responsible Authorities

Please go to our Licensing Direct page for further details and to find out how you can take advantage of our services.

N.B. This Authority is under a duty to protect the public funds it administers, and to this end may use the information you provide on your application form for the prevention and detection of fraud.  It may also share this information with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds for these purposes.  Please see National Fraud Initiative for more information.  

Please send your personal licence application to: Licensing, Cornwall Council, Chy Trevail, Beacon Technology Park, Bodmin, PL31 2FR.

Photographs must be:

a) taken against a light background so that the applicant's features are distinguishable and contrast against the background;

b) 45mm x 35mm in size (i.e. passport size);

c) full face uncovered and without sunglasses and, unless the applicant wears a head covering due to religious beliefs, without a head covering;

d) on photographic paper, and

e) one of the photographs must be endorsed with a statement verifying its likeness to the applicant by:

i. the chief executive of the licensing justices for the relevant licensing authority or

ii. a solicitor or notary or

iii. an individual with a professional qualification or

iv. a person with standing in the community e.g. a bank or building society official, police officer, civil servant or minister of religion.

v. An example of an acceptable statement on the back of one of the photographs:

"I (the endorsers name) certify/verify/endorse this photograph as a true likeness of (the applicants name)" Followed by the signature of the endorser, their full name and their occupation.

If you have any current convictions for any relevant or foreign offences, then we must notify the Chief Officer of Police.  If the police make no objections within the statutory 14 day period, we will grant your licence.

There are currently eight accredited personal licence qualifications:

BIIAB Level 2 National Certificate for Personal Licence Holders

Wessex House
80 Park Street
GU15 3PT

QCA Accreditation Number: 100/4866/2 
Telephone: 01276 684 449
Email: Contact BII online

CIEH Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders

Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
Chadwick Court
15 Hatfields

QCA Accreditation Number: 601/2104/X 
Telephone: 0207 8275800

HABC Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders
Highfield Awarding Body for Compliance Ltd
Highfield House
Sidings Court
QCA Accreditation Number: 500/7383/7
Telephone: 0845 2260350
LASER Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders

The Runnymede Centre
Chertsey Road
KT15 2EP

QCA Accreditation Number: 600/1323/0
Telephone: 01932 569894

NCFE Level 2 National Certificate for Personal Licence Holders

St James’ Boulevard
Newcastle upon Tyne

QCA Accreditation Number: 500/4228/2 
Telephone: 0191 239 8000

SQA Level 2 National Certificate for Personal Licence Holders

24 Wester Shawfair
EH22 1FD

QCA Accreditation Number: 600/1269/9 
Telephone: 0345 2791000

Pearson Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders

The Optima Building
58 Robertson Street
G2 8DW

Qualification accreditation number: 601/3483/5
Telephone: 0844 576 0045

IQ Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders

Industry Qualifications
Head Office
Coppice House

Qualification accreditation number: 601/4980/2
Telephone: 01952 457 452

Please note the National Certificate for Licensees is not an accredited qualification and you need to undertake one of the above courses to become a personal licence holder.

When applying for a personal licence you must submit either a disclosure certificate of criminal convictions, a criminal record certificate or a subject access search, any of which must not be more than one month old.  If it is more than one month old, your application will be rejected and you will have to obtain a new disclosure or check.

The criminal conviction certificate is a basic Criminal Records Disclosure.  A Basic Disclosure certificate can be obtained from Disclosure Scotland – telephone 0870 609 6006 or visit the Disclosure Scotland website

The police subject access search allows individuals to obtain details held on the Police National Computer.