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Cambridge City Council

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Coronavirus: Updates and information

Find out about available support and how to offer help. Our customer service centre is open to help you by email and phone. Please continue to follow official NHS and government advice.

Personal Licence Holders training: Level 2 award

The Licensing Act 2003 makes it a legal requirement for all retail sales of alcohol to be authorised by a Personal Licence holder. In addition, all premises licensed to sell alcohol must have a Designated Premises Supervisor in place, who is a Personal Licence holder. In order to obtain a Personal Licence one of the requirements is the holding of a recognised licensing qualification.

We are accredited with the British Innkeeping Institute Awarding Body (BIIAB) to award the Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders (APLH), the market-leading qualification for obtaining a personal licence for the retail sale of alcohol. Other training providers are available – you do not have to use our services.

The course is aimed at supervisors, managers and owners of businesses who will be required to authorise the sale of alcohol to other staff members. It is also suitable for those wishing to refresh their knowledge and receive updates on changes to licensing law.

Topics covered on the course include:

  • Licensing objectives and licensable activities
  • Premises Licences
  • Personal Licences
  • Temporary Event Notices
  • Responsible retailing
  • Age restricted sales and fake IDs
  • Enforcement


  • “It was a very sociable group and interactive, tutor very approachable and made things clear”
  • “Great course. Very friendly and informative”
  • “Very good knowledge base – relaxed – good use of teaching techniques”
  • “Attended many courses and this was the best ever”

Course delivery

Our licensing courses are taught by experienced enforcement officers who are responsible for the inspection of licensed premises and have achieved the Level 3 Award in Education and Teaching as well as the Institute of Licensing's Professional Licensing Practitioners' Qualification.

We aim to teach groups of no more than 8 people so all candidates can benefit from the knowledge and experience of the tutors who can also give limited pre-application advice.

The course is delivered as a full day session and will cover everything you need to know to pass the examination at the end of the course. The exam is composed of 40 multiple choice questions. You will need to answer at least 28 of 40 questions correctly to pass.

This is an intensive one-day training session – you will be required to study the workbook before the course.

Entry requirements

While there are no formal entry requirements, we recommend that you first consider completing the BIIAB Level 1 Award in Responsible Alcohol Retailing, or be trained to a similar level.

In addition, you will need a thorough understanding of English and maths. If English is not your first language, we recommend you have achieved Level B2 (vantage or upper intermediate) on the CEFR scale, or an equivalent level.

We are able to offer reasonable adjustments to learners with additional support needs, so please contact us to discuss what support we may be able to offer.

Course dates

We have suspended all classroom courses due to the coronavirus outbreak.

We’re looking into other ways to provide the course and examination – we’ll update this page if that is possible. Email us if you would like to receive updates.


The training is provided at our customer service centre at Mandela House on Regent Street. It starts at 9.30am and finishes by 5pm.

There is no car parking available on site – the Grand Arcade car park and Queen Anne Terrace car park are nearby.

There are five Park & Ride sites providing regular bus services into Cambridge city centre, and a number of buses stop close to Mandela House or at the train station.

Limited cycle parking is available on the street opposite Sainsbury’s.


The cost to attend the course is £104 per person. This includes:

  • Course handbook
  • Registration and examination fees
  • Lunch and refreshments
  • Fast-track Personal Licence application* (for applicants applying to Cambridge City Council upon request - please ask for further details)

*subject to the applicant having the correct documentation at the time of application, as well as staff availability.

Candidates are allowed one free re-sit of the examination. Further attempts will cost £20.00.

Group discounts

Contact us to discuss arrangements for group bookings and discounts.

Corporate bookings

We would be pleased to arrange corporate bookings providing a course exclusive for businesses. These courses can take place at your premises, providing adequate facilities are available, and tailored to your training needs.


Book and pay through EventBrite

Once we receive your booking a tutor will send you out a confirmation letter and coursebook within 5 working days.

When booking your place on EventBrite please make sure you provide up-to-date contact details including an address where you can receive the confirmation letter.

If you experience any problems using EventBrite or would like to book in another way then please contact us direct.

Privacy policies

We will only use your information for the purposes of training and certification. Read our privacy notice to find out more.

We’ll share your information with the accrediting body, BIIAB, and you’ll need to share some when booking with Eventbrite. Both will handle your data in line with their privacy policies.