Q&As

Can a local authority hire out its own premises for external events such as wedding fairs or Christmas parties? What powers does it have to charge for any licence created?

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Published on LexisPSL on 06/07/2018

The following Local Government Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Can a local authority hire out its own premises for external events such as wedding fairs or Christmas parties? What powers does it have to charge for any licence created?
  • The power to charge
  • What charges can be applied
  • Disposal under LGA 1972, s 123

Can a local authority hire out its own premises for external events such as wedding fairs or Christmas parties? What powers does it have to charge for any licence created?

The power to charge

The Local Government Act 2003 (LGA 2003) introduced provisions in relation to trading and charging, which draw a broad distinction between charging (ie cost recovery only) and trading (which allows the authority to make a profit).

A local authority can only levy a charge pursuant to express statutory authority or when such authority is necessarily implied (or implied by the clearest words). The general power to do anything which is calculated to facilitate, or is conducive or incidental to, the discharge of its functions does not extend to the imposition of charges (section 111 of the Local Government Act 1972 (LGA 1972)). See Commentary: Local authorities' charging powers: in general: Halsbury’s Laws of England [536].

The appropriate national authority may make regulations enabling a charge to be imposed, and local authorities also have the power to charge for discretionary services. See Commentary: Relevant authority's

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