IMPORTANT NOTICE: A Declared State of Disaster is currently in place across Victoria. For more information, see: COVID-19 information for licensees
There are things you will need to consider, including licence requirements, before applying for a licence to run a live music venue.
You will need to consider which licence type best suits your needs. An on-premises licence authorises the licensee to supply liquor on the licensed premises for consumption on the licensed premises. A general licence authorises the licensee to supply liquor for consumption on and off the licenced premises. A late night application must be completed when applying for a general licence or an on-premises licence where trading hours extend after 1am.
Applicants are advised to lodge liquor licence applications at least eight weeks in advance. The time taken to process an application will vary depending on a range of factors including the complexity of the application and any objections which may be raised.
It's a condition of on-premises or late night (on-premises) licences that the use of the licensed premises does not breach the planning scheme under the Planning and Environment Act 1987.
Applicants are required to provide a copy of the following information with their application:
This ensures that the activities undertaken are consistent and appropriate for that area. For example, a licensee cannot operate a night club in an area where night club activity is not permitted under the local planning zone restrictions.
Contact your Local Government Authority for information about obtaining a planning permit.
Training for licence applicants helps potential licensees to understand their obligations under the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998.
Applicants must complete mandatory training requirements, including Responsible Service of Alcohol, before a liquor licence is granted.
If you are applying for a Late Night General or Late Night On Premises licence, licensees and the person in management control of the premises will be required to complete an Advanced RSA course within six months of a licence being granted.
See new entrant training for more information.
For a licence to be issued, the applicant must have the right to occupy the premises. You need to complete the Notification Declaration - right to occupy form which is located in the application kit.
One of the following documents is required to determine a maximum patron capacity:
For more information download the Maximum patron capacity fact sheet.
A management plan identifies and develops a responsible approach to running the venue. The management of a licensed premises plays a vital role in preventing and reducing antisocial behaviour and violence in licensed premises.
It is the responsibility of the licensee to manage the risks of alcohol-related harm in their venue. Each licensed premises presents different risks and licensees are in a unique position to understand the particular issues and risks relevant to their licensed premises.
Generally, applications for trading after 1am or large patron capacities will require a management plan. For more information see the Management plan fact sheet.
See the matrix below for venues that require a management plan.
The matrix sets out suggested licence conditions for licensed premises that provide live music entertainment to address the requirements of the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998 (the Act). As a guide, each level in the matrix sets out suggested licence conditions differentiated by the trading hours and patron capacity endorsed on the licence.
^ Basic conditions include amenity, patron capacity and/or trading hours. These conditions are currently imposed on most licences and would continue to be imposed as relevant and appropriate.
* Crowd controller licence conditions would be assessed on a case-by-case basis and may require crowd controllers during specified times or when particular numbers of patrons are in attendance.
# Restaurant and cafe licences or wine and beer producer's licences will usually fall into Level 1. However, the VCGLR has the discretion to change the suggested level of these licences for individual licensed premises, for example where the licence contains a large patron capacity.