Agenda and minutes

Licensing Sub-Committee A - Wednesday, 9th August, 2023 2.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Offices, Gloucester Square, Woking, Surrey GU21 6YL

Contact: Doug Davern  on 01483 743018 or email

No. Item


Election of Chairman

To elect a Chairman of the Sub-Committee for the remainder of the Municipal Year.


Councillor Leach was elected Chairman of the Sub-Committee for the remainder of the Municipal Year.


Election of Vice-Chairman

To elect a Vice-Chairman of the Sub-Committee for the remainder of the Municipal Year.


Councillor Hussain was elected Vice-Chairman of the Sub-Committee for the remainder of the Municipal Year.



To approve the minutes of the meeting of the Licensing Sub-Committee A held on 14 March 2023 as published.




That the minutes of the Sub-Committee held on 14 March 2023 be approved and signed as a true and correct record.


Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of disclosable pecuniary and other interests from Members in respect of any item to be considered at the meeting.


There were no Declarations of Interest.


Urgent Business

To consider any business that the Chairman rules may be dealt with under Section 100B(4) of the Local Government Act 1972.


There were no items of Urgent Business.


Review of Premises Licence - Panda Restaurant, 33 Chertsey Road, Woking pdf icon PDF 178 KB

Reporting Person – Matthew Cobb

Additional documents:


The Sub-Committee had before it a report regarding an application by the Home Office for a Review of the Premises Licence held by Panda Restaurant, 33 Chertsey Road, Woking.  Caroline Laird, Immigration Enforcement Officer, and Joshua Anantham attended the meeting to represent the Home Office.  Rongsen Yang, attended the meeting to represent Panda Restaurant, along with his wife to assist with any translation needed.  Mr Yang was the sole director of Q&Q Hospitality Ltd which was the holder of the Premises Licence

All parties present had a copy of the Licensing Committee’s agreed procedure to be followed at Licensing Sub-Committee hearings.  The Chairman introduced Members of the Sub-Committee and outlined the order of speaking which would be followed at the hearing.

The Licensing Authority’s representative, Matthew Cobb, advised the Sub-Committee that on 14 April 2023, following receipt of intelligence relating to illegal workers in the premises, the Home Office had carried out an inspection of Panda Restaurant.  During the visit it was found that three staff members onsite had no right to be working and were served Immigration paperwork accordingly.  Since 2006, all businesses had a legal requirement under the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 to carry out right to work checks, ensuring all staff members held a legal right to work in the UK.  In January 2019, the Home Office system was improved further with the implementation of an online checking system, allowing employers to carry out a quick and simple check on a potential employee. 

Mr Cobb reported that Section 4 of the Licensing Act 2003 states that, in carrying out its functions, a Licensing Authority must have regard to guidance issued by the Secretary of State under the Section 182 Guidance on Illegal Working, in which it was categorised as a serious offence alongside illegal firearms, prostitution, drug dealing and other crimes.  Section 11.27 of the Guidance stated that criminal activities with a connection to a licensed premises should be treated seriously, and where reviews arise it is expected that revocation of the Premises Licence, even in the first instance, should be seriously considered.  The matter was therefore before the Sub-Committee for determination.

None of the parties present had any questions for Mr Cobb.

The Chairman gave the Home Office the opportunity to address the Sub-Committee.  Ms Laird advised the Sub-Committee that during the visit on 14 April 2023, following intelligence received, nine staff had been found to be working at the premises of whom three had been found to be working illegally.  Mr Yang was the Designated Premises Supervisor and had admitted that the workers had been undergoing a trial shift and the required right to work checks had not been carried out.  Ms Laird stated that easily available guidance on the checks was available on YouTube and that not carrying them out raised issues of tax underpayment, wages being paid below the minimum wage and unfair competition.  The Home Office was considering the level of Civil Penalty Referral to be served on the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.