Premises Licences

This page contains helpful information about what type of licence you may require, the process for applications (and renewals), as well as what is required of you and what your application is likely to cost. 

Licence types  |  Process for applications  |  Amenity and good order  |  Application fees

Renewal of a licence  |  Objecting to an application |  Contacts

Licence types

There are three types of alcohol licence available (new and renewal), which depends on what you are looking to do. These are:


This is for bars (taverns), restaurants and cafes, BYO restaurants and on-caterers (i.e. anywhere that sells alcohol to be consumed on the premises).

All on-licenses need to have substantial food available on the premises at all times when alcohol is for sale.

The national maximum trading hours are 8:00am until 4:00am the following day.

Whilst the Tararua District does not currently have a local alcohol policy (though we are currently researching to determine the need and benefits of such a policy), the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 allows a District Licensing Committee (DLC) to apply more restrictive hours where applicable e.g. 8am to 2am the following day.

On-Licence application - New (618KB pdf)
On-Licence application - Renewal (491KB pdf)


This is for bottles stores, on-line stores, supermarkets selling alcohol and cellar doors; this type of license is where alcohol is sold with the intention that it is taken away to be consumed off the premises.

The national maximum trading hours are 7:00am until 11:00pm.

Off-Licence Application - New (606KB pdf)
Off-Licence application - Renewal (255KB pdf)

Club Licence

This is for any club that is registered as an Incorporated Society and can only sell and supply alcohol to members and their guests.

Club Licence Application - New (317KB pdf)
Club Licence Application - Renewal (289KB pdf)

The DLC meets on the first Friday of each month to determine applications, please plan accordingly. If you wish to discuss anything relating to the sale of alcohol, please contact the Licensing Inspector.

Temporary Authority

If you are looking at taking over currently licensed premises, you must get a Temporary Authority before you can trade. A Temporary Authority allows a new owner to operate off an existing licence issued for the premises for up to 3 months. You will need to apply for a new licence in your name (or company name) within this 3 month period.

Temporary Authority Application Form (207KB pdf)

Please be aware that the application must go before the DLC for determination. The DLC meets on the first Friday of each month to determine applications

NB: You will also need to have a chat with the Environmental Health Officer

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Process for applications

The process for each application is generally:

  • Submit a completed application to the District Licensing Committee (at Council). You must ensure your application is complete, you can do this by using the check sheet attached to the application form.
  • Publicly notify your application in the Bush Telegraph within 20 working days after lodging your application.
  • Display a notice in a conspicuous place on or adjacent to the site the application refers to.

Applying for a license to sell or supply alcohol (284KB pdf)

Once your application has been received:

  • The District Licensing Committee (DLC) Secretary will forward a copy of your application to the Police, Medical Officer of Health and Licensing Inspector, who are required under the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act to inquire into the application.
  • If the Police or Medical Officer of Health has any matters in opposition to the application, they must file a report on it within 15 working days. Copies of their reports will be sent to you.
  • The licensing inspector will provide a report to the DLC, on the application regarding the agencies and the application in general i.e. an assessment against the application criteria.
  • A person with a greater interest in the application than the public generally may object to your application within 15 working days of the first publication of the public notice. If any are received, these will be forwarded to you.

The DLC will determine the application whether there are no objections (on the papers) or;

  • If the Police or Medical Officer of Health raises matters in opposition to your application, the DLC may choose to determine the application on the papers or refer this to a public hearing.
  • If objections are received from a person with a greater interest than the general public, this would also be via a public hearing.

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Amenity and good order

All license applications must demonstrate how the amenity and good order of the locality would not be reduced by ‘more than a minor extent’ if the license was granted.

This includes aspects like:

  • Current noise or possible future noise levels;
  • Current or possible nuisance and vandalism;
  • Rubbish in an area caused by the premises
  • Location to sensitive sites such as churches, educational facilities etc

The DLC must in considering an application, also have regard to:

  • The number of premises for which similar Licences are already held in the area;
  • The purpose for which land near the premises concerned are used;
  • The purpose for which those premises will be used if the license is issued

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Application fees

The Sale and Supply of Alcohol (fees) Regulations 2013 specify the default fees for all applications. The fees are fixed and are based on the type of license,  hours of trade and any enforcement actions taken.

Tararua District Council's fees can be viewed in the latest Fees and Charges document (refer to Regulatory section), which is available on the Annual Plan page of our website.

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Renewal of a licence

A new On, Off or Club licence is issued for an initial ‘probationary’ year. Following this, a licence is issued every three years thereafter.

It is your responsibility to ensure that your licence renewal application is lodged on time. However, as your renewal date approaches, we will send you a renewal application form, we will also try to contact you before the expiry date. 

If your licence expires, we cannot renew the licence and you will need to apply for a new licence. Please note, you will not be permitted to sell alcohol in the interim.

Renewal process

All renewal applications for On, Off or Club licences must be publicly notified and a notice must be attached in a conspicuous place on or adjacent to the premises site.

You must submit the completed renewal application and sign a statement that an approved fire evacuation scheme exists for the premises (or that the premises are exempt from having to have an approved scheme).

The renewal application will be referred to the Police and Medical Officer of Health (On and Club licence applications).

Any objections, or matters raised in opposition, by the Public, Police or Medical Officer of Health, may lead to the renewal application being referred for a public hearing in front of the District Licensing Committee (DLC). 

Any person with an interest greater than the public may object to your application within 15 working days of the publication of the first public notice. If any are received, these will be forwarded to you too.

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Objecting to a Premises Application

Who can object?

People can object on the basis of any of the licensing criteria in the Act.  Objections to the granting of a licence may only be made if the objector has a greater interest than the general public.

A person with a ‘greater interest’ could, for example be someone living or working in the same street as the proposed premises, or a member of a board of trustees of a school or marae that is located nearby.

A member of the public who is concerned about the general effects of alcohol in the community but who lives in another part of town and does not have a special interest in the application is unlikely to meet the criterion of having ‘greater interest’ than the general public.

What are the grounds for objection?

An objection can be made based on (but only on) any of the criteria in section 105 of the Act. The decision makers cannot take into account the impacts of the licence on business conducted under any other licence or other matters not covered by the criteria.

How do I make an objection?

  • Your objection must be filed with the District Licensing Committees (DLC) within 15 working days after the first public notice about the application appears in the newspaper. The full postal address of the DLC will be included in the notification.
  • Your objection must be made in writing and include your full name, address and contact telephone number. You may object only in relation to matters that are able to be considered when granting a licence - the licence criteria. You should clearly set out the reasons for your objection and also state whether or not you wish to appear at any hearing. Your objection is likely to have greater effect if you attend the hearing personally and speak in support of your submission.
  • You can make an individual objection or participate in a written group submission, nominating one or two representatives to appear and present the objection at the hearing.
  • Once your objection is received, it becomes a public document and will be made available to the person applying for the licence and other people or organisations outside the DLC.

If you would like to make an objection to an application, you will need to complete and submit the Objection to an Application form. It is also advised that you read Objecting to a licence to sell or supply alcohol (305KB pdf).

How do I appeal a decision?

If you disagree with the DLC’s decision you can appeal to ARLA.  Appeals against ARLA decisions are dealt with by way of a rehearing.  You need to give a notice of appeal to ARLA within 10 working days of the date of the decision being notified to you. Please note, there is a cost for filing an appeal.  

For more information on appeals, go to:

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Contact details

Licensing Inspector
06 374 4080 or 06 376 0110
26 Gordon Street, Dannevirke (physical)
PO Box 115, Dannevirke 4942 (postal)
    Environmental Health Officer
06 374 4080 or 06 376 0110
26 Gordon Street, Dannevirke (physical)
PO Box 115, Dannevirke 4942 (postal)

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