30 May 2022

Minister calls for councils to show ‘flexibility’ over Jubilee licences

30 May 2022

A minister has urged councils to show “a little bit of flexibility” when it comes to issuing licences for street parties to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Technology minister Chris Philp spoke about councils warning the public against hosting unauthorised Platinum Jubilee street celebrations this week.

More than 70,000 Big Jubilee Lunches are planned in the four UK nations over the weekend, with an expected 10 million people set to sit down with their neighbours on June 5, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) previously said.

Technology minister Chris Philp spoke about councils warning the public against hosting unauthorised Platinum Jubilee street celebrations (House of Commons/PA) (PA Archive)

Mr Philp told Sky News: “I think it is fantastic we are celebrating the Queen’s Jubilee, and I would just say to local councils around the country, including mine in Croydon, if you do get a late application, and maybe the deadline has technically passed, I would just say to the councils to show a little bit of flexibility, show a little bit of willingness to accommodate people.

“And if you are at all able to, please do grant these requests, even if they are maybe technically after the deadline.”

Some councils which have required permission for people to hold street parties have already seen their deadlines pass.

Barnet Council in north London is one local authority which urged residents to apply if they wanted to hold a street party. The deadline for an application was April 8.

The Royal Borough of Greenwich Council, in south-east London, also required residents to register their parties before March 25.

A Barnet Council spokesperson said: “We engaged very early with residents and gave a longer time for applications than many other boroughs, extending the deadline up until April 29.

“Thanks to that, this jubilee we will be hosting a record-breaking 130+ parties, and we hope everyone who wishes to, will be able to join the celebrations in Barnet.”

A spokesperson for the Royal Borough of Greenwich said: “As a royal borough we are very proud to have 65 street parties taking place to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

“Our deadline of 25 March provided enough time to ensure that all legal requirements were met and that measures can be put in place to limit disruption caused by road closures. Application deadlines are necessary in order to make these events a success both for the residents involved in the party and those who would be affected by the road closures.

“It is very important to us that our communities can mark historic occasions like this one and we are thrilled to have so many Royal Greenwich residents celebrating this momentous occasion with their neighbours.

“Although it is now too late to apply to close a road for a street party, it is not too late for residents to join us in Charlton Park for our free family events, Royal Together 22 on Thursday 2 June and Platinum Picnic in the Park on Friday 3 June.”

Licences are not required if people are sharing alcohol and food with neighbours and friends free of charge during the parties.

However, they are required if people want to sell alcohol, sell food and drink after 11pm, plan to charge for an event, or if entertainment is “regulated”, takes place for the wider public and involves tickets being sold, such as live music or a play.

A special permit is needed to close local roads to celebrate the Jubilee.

Thousands of people are expected to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee this week (James Whatling/PA) (PA Wire)

Meanwhile, there are strict rules in place around raffles or tombolas, which count as lotteries.

The Gambling Commission states that lotteries at events do not require a licence because they are classed as incidental lotteries, but people must make sure they follow the rules to run an incidental non-commercial lottery legally. This includes tombolas, raffles and sweepstakes.

Its guidance says people must provide physical tickets to those taking part. There are no set requirements for what must be printed on the tickets, as long as they can identify which ones are the winning tickets. For example, cloakroom tickets can be used.

The commission adds: “Tickets can only be sold at the location of the event and whilst the event is taking place. You can’t sell tickets online (which includes social media) or in advance of the event.

“You can take up to a maximum of £500 from proceeds to pay for prizes. Prizes can also be donated – there isn’t a limit on how much donated prizes can cost.

“You can either do the lottery draw during or after the event. We recommend that you make it clear to participants when you’ll be announcing the result.”

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