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Pre-Application Advice Service

Our Licensing Team deal with a range of applications, some more complex than others. We now offer a pre-application advice service and the aim is to try and make the application process as easy as possible. This service is offered for the following aspects of licensing:

  • Alcohol and entertainment (i.e. new premises, variations and changes to the licence)
  • Gambling (i.e. new premises, variations and transfers)
  • Animal welfare (i.e. dog breeding, animal boarding, riding establishments, pet shops and zoos)
  • Hackney Carriage and Private Hire
  • Scrap metal dealers
  • Sex establishments
  • Acupuncture, tattooing, electrolysis and ear or body piercing

Benefits of pre-application advice

The advice given depends on the application you want to submit and the level of assistance you would like to receive. In general, we can assist with the following:

  • Advice and assistance with completing application forms;
  • Advice on appropriate conditions taken from the pool of standard conditions or, in consultation with responsible authorities;
  • Advice on drawing up plans and other technical documents to accompany applications in accordance with the relevant requirements;
  • Advice on nominating an appropriate designated premises supervisor;
  • Assistance with completing the statutory notices and advertising; and
  • On-site visit(s) to ensure plans are compliant with prescribed regulations and the appropriate statutory notices are correctly on display.
  • Other advice and assistance may be provided if necessary.

What customers have said

When I was informed that I required a variation to my premises licence, I really didn’t know what was expected from me. Mid Devon District Council licensing team told me about a service they offer to help you through the process for a small fee. This proved  to be a great success. It saved me a lot in time, guiding me through the process with the licensing officer advising me all the way through the application process. I would advise anyone who needs help to take up the offer of this service as it is extremely beneficial”. (Pub)

“MDDC licensing pre application service was brilliant. The council’s very experienced team listened to understand our business, responded very quickly, were informative in both the big picture overview and in helping us ensure the detail of our application was best fit for our business, factually correct, properly considered and well presented. By using MDDC pre application service I am sure we both saved time in getting the application right on the first submission and saved money by not wasting time and energy getting things wrong. They also held our hand at every step to ensure we missed nothing and understood a process which otherwise could have been quite confusing. Overall - Great value and we would recommend the service without hesitation.” (Restaurant/Bistro)

“We have had the best service ever from the Licensing officer. As a business owner I strongly recommend Alcohol licensing advisory service to any new or even existing business owners who are applying for a premises licence . The personal service we have had from them was second to none and they advised us at every step of application and also things we need to be careful about. It took all our worry away leaving us to focus on business side. I strongly recommend this service to others & we will use it again for other businesses.” (Local Shop)

“I just wanted to say how helpful you were in helping us update our Bar  licence”. (Wedding/ Function Venue)

How to make a request for pre-application advice

There is a charge for this service and a list of the fees can be found on our Pre-application Advice Fee Table. The table provides information on the different levels of advice that may be required. If you're unsure of how much advice you may need, please Contact us.

To request pre-application advice, please complete our Pre-Application Advice Form and return to us via email to, or by post using the following address:

Mid Devon District Council
Phoenix House
Phoenix Lane
EX16 6PP

Once we've received your request, we'll contact you to take payment over the phone using a debit or credit card. When payment has been received, a Licensing Officer will contact you within two working days.

Fee Exemptions

We may be able to offer this advice for free if you qualify for an exemption from paying the statutory fee for an application. Examples of these include educational institutes, buildings used for religious purposes, village and community halls and non-profit making charities.

Please note that Mid Devon District Council no longer accept payment via cheque.

Additional information and disclaimer

Any pre-application advice cannot prejudge the outcome of the licensing application. The final decision on your application will be made by Council Members or under delegated authority by a different officer.

Depending on the type of application, it may be subject to a statutory consultation period after submission. You should therefore be aware that our officers are unable to give any guarantees about the decision that will be made in relation to your application. Additionally:

  • We will not deal with your request for advice until payment has been made
  • We are not responsible for advertising your application (if required)
  • The pre-application advice service will end once an application is submitted
  • A new officer (i.e. different from the officer providing pre-application advice), will deal with your application once it's been submitted

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