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Cinema and Theatre Licensing

Cinema and Theatre Licensing

Cinemas and theatres with their abundance of high powered electrical equipment, elaborate temporary sets and closely packed audiences can both present real concerns regarding public safety that make the licensing of such premises imperative.

The licensing of cinemas and theatres was, up until November 2005, regulated by the Cinemas Act 1985 and the Theatres Act 1968. The Licensing Act 2003 then repealed both these pieces of legislation.

Under the Licensing Act 2003 the performance of a play or the screening of a film are both classed as regulated entertainments, if staged in front of an audience, and require by law the authority of a premises licence, club premises certificate or a temporary event notice.

Adur & Worthing Councils' Licensing Unit is responsible for the administration and enforcement of the Licensing Act 2003 and anyone seeking to stage plays or screen films in the presence of an audience, whether on a permanent or temporary one off basis, should contact the unit for advice and application information.

If you have queries regarding cinema or theatre licensing or wish to make a licence application please contact the Licensing Unit.

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Film classification

We have produced a document on film classification, which includes details on how to submit unclassified films to for a classification locally that have a limited distribution and have not been through the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) system.

For further information regarding film classification please go to the BBFC's website or contact the Licensing Unit.

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