Entertainment Licence








Licence summary

 If you wish to provide entertainment to members of the public you must obtain a licence from the Council.

Generally two main categories of entertainment:-
Indoor Entertainment and Outdoor Entertainment.

      Indoor Entertainment:

This consists of:

  • A theatrical performance
  • Dancing, singing, music or any other entertainment of a like kind
  • A circus
  • Any entertainment which consists of any public contest, match exhibition or display of
    • Boxing, wrestling, judo, karate or any similar sport
    • billiards, pool, snooker or any similar game
    • darts
  • Machines for entertainment or amusement (excluding gaming machines)
  • Equipment for playing billiards, pool, snooker or similar games

       Outdoor Entertainment:

This is entertainment of a musical nature that takes place wholly or mainly in the open air and on private land.

Before a licence can be granted premises must meet technical requirements and must comply with any conditions attached to a licence once issued.


Eligibility Criteria

A licence may not be granted, renewed or transferred to any applicant if they have been convicted of an offence of providing unlicensed entertainment, or providing entertainments otherwise than in accordance with the licence terms and conditions within 5 years preceding the date of the application.

Regulation Summary

The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) (NI) Order 1985




Application Evaluation Process

 Applications must include:

  • Three copies of plans of the building
  • A Periodic Inspection Report on the Electrical Installation
  • Certification showing that there is in force a policy of public liability insurance

Applications must also be accompanied by the appropriate fee


Applicants must, within 7 days of the application date, place a notice in two newspapers circulating in the council district stating that an application for an entertainment licence has been made. This permits members of the public 28 days, from the application date, to make any representation in relation to the application.

Evidence that these public notices have been placed must be provided to the council as part of the application process.

Copies of the application will be sent to the Police Service of Northern Ireland and the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service. Their comments will be taken into consideration when deciding whether or not the licence should be granted.

An inspection of the premises will be carried out by the Council before a new application can be approved. This may require works to be carried out.

All premises will be inspected by a Council Officer to ensure that the premises meet technical requirements before a licence can be renewed.

Where representations have been lodged as a result of the public notice placed in two local newspapers both the applicant and the persons making the representation will be given the opportunity to appear before the council.

Neither applicant nor the persons making such representations are obliged to appear however all representations will be considered by the Council when determining whether or not the licence should be renewed. Applicants will be made aware of any objections lodged at the earliest practical opportunity. 

Applicants can also request to appear before the council to make a representation about the application, even if no other representations have been made.

 Will Tacit Consent Apply?

 Tacit does apply.

If you have not heard from the Council within a reasonable period, please contact us. Telephone the Licensing Officer on 028 71376516, or email [email protected]



Apply Online

Apply for Grant of Entertainment Licence
Apply to vary existing Entertainment Licence
Apply to renew or transfer your Entertainment Licence

Forms available to Download, print and post


Entertainment Licence Application and Guidance Notes

Application for Grant/Renewal/Transfer* of Entertainment Licence




Contact Details


Telephone:  Licensing Officer:- 028 71376516

Fax: 028 71368536

E-mail: [email protected]
Licensing Section
City Secretary and Solicitor’s Department
Derry City Council
98 Strand Road
BT48 7NN


Failed Application Redress


Please contact Derry City Council in the first instance.
Where an application is refused the applicant may appeal to the county court. 
This must be done within 21 days of the date the applicant has been notified of such a decision.
Applicants may also appeal any term, condition or restriction imposed on them by the licence.  Again, this should be done within 21 days of receiving notification of the term, condition or restriction to the county court.

Licence Holder Redress

Please contact Derry City Council in the first instance.

A licence holder may apply to vary a condition attached to a licence.

Applications are made to the district council (see 'Apply online').


Consumer Complaint


We would always advise that in the event of a complaint the first contact is made with the licensee by you - preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery).


Other Redress


Any complaints concerning entertainment, including complaints about breach of conditions of licence, noise etc should be made directly to the Licensing Section, City Secretary and Solicitors Department. on 028 71376516, or by emailing [email protected]

Advice on noise problems is available in the Department of the Environment leaflet “Bothered by Noise” which is available at -


Trade Associations and other useful links


Contact the local Court office: [email protected]

Other Licences may be required for the provision of music to the public:

Performing Rights Society
PPL Licences