Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Information and Updates

Updates on council services, latest news and information relating to Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Alcohol Licences

If you wish to sell alcohol then you will need a licence. This includes events where alcohol is provided following the purchase of an entrance ticket.

The impact of the Coronavirus (COVID -19) continues to have a significant impact on the processing of licence applications.

If you need to get in touch with the Licensing Team, please do so by email to the following address email enquiries will be prioritised and responded to on a priority/urgent basis.

In the meantime, applications for licences and permits should be posted along with cheques or postal orders for payment of any fee required and copies of all required supporting documentation to;

Licensing Team
West Lothian Council
Civic Centre
EH54 6FF

If you are unable to post your application and fee please contact the Licensing Team by email.

Please be aware that there will likely be delays in the processing of applications due to changes in working conditions due to the ongoing situation. 

All alcohol licences for premises within West Lothian (including outdoor areas) are issued by West Lothian Licensing Board. The sale of alcohol is controlled by the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005, which requires the following five licensing objectives to be upheld, when sales of alcohol are taking place;

  • Preventing Crime and Disorder
  • Securing Public Safety
  • Preventing Public Nuisance
  • Protecting and Improving Public Health
  • Protecting Children and Young Persons from Harm

Unless the premises are covered by a premises licence an occasional licence will be needed to authorise sales of alcohol on a temporary basis. Information regarding the different types of alcohol licences and applications can be found below.

Please note that due to the Coronavirus pandemic a number of changes have been made to the alcohol licensing regime in Scotland by the Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020:-

Coronavirus (Scotland) Act as Enacted

It is strongly recommended that you seek legal or specialist advice regarding these changes before making applications to the Board or with regard to any other aspect of alcohol licensing under the 2005 Act. Please be aware that we are currently in the process of updating the information on our webpages and forms to take account of these changes and hope to complete these as soon as possible. If you are in any doubt about our requirements, or are seeking any other guidance regarding alcohol licensing during the emergency period, please email the Licensing Team at

Information on how to apply for a personal licence, personal licence refresher training and how to renew your personal licence.
Information on premises licence including how to apply, variation of a premises licence, transfer of a premises licence, Designated Premises Manager (DPM) and payment of annual fees.
An occasional licence is required in terms of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 for the temporary sale of alcohol at a venue, or part of a venue, which is not covered by a premises licence and in certain circumstances for the sale of alcohol at members clubs where they are open to the public for specific events (see below for further information regarding clubs).
You can apply to West Lothian Licensing Board if you hold a premises licence in West Lothian for an extension to your normal licensing hours.
Under the Licensing (Scotland ) Act 2005 and associated Regulations West Lothian Licensing Board must advertise all applications for new premises licences, premises licence variation applications and occasional licences.
From 1 May 2018 alcohol can only be sold at or above 50 pence per unit.
The sale of alcohol is controlled by law and each local government area must have a Licensing Board.
The Local Licensing Forum for West Lothian Council, known as "The West Lothian Alcohol Licensing Forum" ("the Forum") is not a policy-making or a decision-making body.
The Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005 introduced the role of the Licensing Standards Officer (LSO), who is responsible under the Act for providing guidance and information to interested parties; ensuring compliance by licence holders; and providing a mediation service for the purpose of avoiding or resolving disputes.

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