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If you are considering showing live sporting events in your licensed premises, it’s essential to have the correct commercial subscription in place with broadcasters.

Below are links to useful information regarding the major broadcasters’ commercial subscriptions:

As well as a commercial subscription from the broadcasters, you will also need a valid TV licence for the premises.

If you reside on the premises or offer guest rooms with television facilities, a separate licence will be required. You may also need a PPLPRS licence to deal with any copyright issues.

If you plan to screen any sporting events that are not on live television, such as re-runs of old football matches, you will also need to ensure that your premises licence allows you to show films, as this is classed as a licensable activity.

Local police, licensing officers and other enforcement authorities frequently visit venues to check that they have the correct permissions in place, and, if they don’t, to enforce any relevant actions be taken.

In addition, the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) works closely with the broadcasters to tackle illegal broadcasting.

FACT can prosecute pubs and operators for showing sports without the correct licence or authorised commercial subscription, which has resulted in heavy fines being imposed by the courts.

The fines for broadcasting commercial television without a licence are unlimited and you may have to pay substantial legal costs. In some cases, it could lead to having your personal licence revoked.

Please be aware that if you do start showing sporting events more frequently, you may attract a new clientele to your premises or your regular customers may choose to stay longer. This may lead to increased levels of intoxication, which could cause noise issues when using outside areas or when leaving the premises. Take a look at our useful resource on dealing with drunkenness in licensed premises.

If you are considering any possible changes to your normal operations, you should carry out a risk assessment. You should also check your premises licence to see if there are any restrictive conditions, as the proposed alterations may require a variation to be made to your licence.



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