New regulations came into force on 1 October 2018, meaning that any renewals under the old legislation or any new premises after 1 October 2018 will need to comply with the new regulations and associated Government guidance.
The Government set out new conditions which are applicable across England, meaning that the local authority can no longer prescribe their own conditions. We therefore, cannot change any of the conditions either, and all premises will be inspected under the new regime from 1 October 2018.
Those businesses operating under current licenses will be able to continue to do so until the expiry date of their licence. All applications to renew licenses will be under the new legislation. Unfortunately, there are no ‘grandfathers rights’ and so existing businesses may need to make changes.
All new premises will need to submit an application form. All currently licensed premises will be sent a letter when their renewal is due.
The applicant must complete an application form for each of the licensable activities they apply for. The applicant must then send the completed forms to East Suffolk Council along with the application fee. The relevant local authority will be the one that covers the area of the applicant’s premises where the majority of the applicant’s licensable activities happen.
Local authorities should aim to issue a decision on an application within 10 weeks of receiving a new licence application. It is possible that the process can take longer, for example, if further information is needed from the applicant or if it’s difficult to arrange the inspection. However, we will look to determine each application within 10 weeks wherever possible. A new application and fee may be required from the applicant, if the application is held up due to insufficient information provided, to determine compliance with the licence conditions.
East Suffolk Council will write to each licence holder that to inform them that they need to renew their licence 3 months before it is due to expire. The licence holder must apply to renew a licence at least 10 weeks before their current licence expires. This is to avoid incurring a break in the licensable activity, if they wish to continue to operate.
All premises will be inspected before the licence is granted. The inspector will be looking to make sure the applicant has the following:
Based on the information, we will assess the risk rating and award stars. Low-risk premises can attain up to five stars, and premises that have been assessed as higher risk can be awarded up to four stars.
The star rating will prescribe the number of inspections undertaken during the licence period. There will be a minimum of 2 inspections, one announced (before granting the licence), and at least one unannounced during the licensed period.
A premises with a lower star rating is not necessarily a premises to avoid as there are other factors that have to be considered, such as the length of time the licence holder has been operating. New businesses will be assessed as slightly higher risk simply because there is no history of good practice that can be considered.
See the Legislation and guidance from Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Canine and Feline Sector Group for information relevant to your particular animal activity. This document will be used by inspectors to aid the inspection process. There are some ‘optional’ and ‘required’ conditions which may help you to achieve a higher star rating.
If you have any concerns, please contact our Environmental Protection Team prior to making a purchase or making booking arrangements.
If you undertake more than one activity such as animal boarding businesses (including home boarders and day carers), dog breeders, selling animals as pets, hiring out horses (e.g. horse riding) or keeping or training animals for exhibition (e.g. bird, animal displays etc.) you will need to apply for each activity, and pay a fee for each additional activity you undertake. For example, if you hire out horses, and breed dogs, you will have to pay the fee for hiring out horses, and an additional activity fee for breeding dogs.
Any fit and proper person who is not disqualified from keeping animals may apply.
We recommend that you discuss your proposals with Planning Services to determine whether a planning application is needed.
Once your application has been received, an officer will contact you as soon as possible, and within 28 days. The amount of time taken to determine the application will range depending on a number of factors, such as availability of a veterinary surgeon for the initial inspection and the amount of work required to comply with the licence conditions.
No. An animal activity (described in the Regulations) cannot be run without the appropriate licence.
This could be 1, 2 or 3 years and depends on your risk rating and star rating, which will be advised after the inspection and paperwork has been completed by the inspecting officer.
You will have 28 days following the notice of refusal to appeal to the First Tier Tribunal.
If you are not satisfied with the decision, you can make improvements to address highlighted issues, and ask for a re-inspection (fees apply). Or, if you wish to appeal the star rating given by the inspecting officer, the appeal should be made in writing to our office. You are encouraged to speak with the inspecting officer first so that the reasons behind the awarded star rating can be explained to you. Businesses have 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) following the issue with the licence to appeal the star rating.
|Public register of pet shops|
|East Suffolk register of pet shops|
It may be possible to keep an animal classed as dangerous (as defined under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 Schedule) in a premises which is licensed for “selling animals as pets”.
However, the applicant will need to ensure that they meet all the conditions required by the Council before the animal is obtained. Currently, we have a Standard set of conditions, and a further set of Specific conditions relating to the keeping of wild boar.
If the applicant wishes to house an animal which we do not already have a Specific set of conditions for, the Council will determine conditions for these where appropriate. We may employ the services of a third party such as a zoo inspector or otherwise qualified person to advise the Council on the animals specific needs. Therefore, the application may take longer than usual whilst advice is sought, and conditions agreed upon by the Council.
If you are considering keeping a dangerous wild animal under the terms of your licence, it is important to contact the Council at the earliest opportunity so that we can consider which conditions may be imposed. It is not reasonable or sensible for us to maintain a set of Specific conditions for each animal scheduled under the DWA 1976 Act, we therefore deal with each application as it arrives- hence there may be some delay whilst we seek specialist advice for each case.