Re Bannerton

Judgment Date14 February 1986
Neutral Citation1986 WJSC-SC 109
CourtSupreme Court
Docket Number[S.C. No. 148 of 1984]
Date14 February 1986

1986 WJSC-SC 109


Finlay C.J.

Walsh J.

Henchy J.

Griffin J.

Hederman J.









Renewal - Objection - Licensed hotel - Register of hotels - Failure to register premises - Applicant seeking renewal of licence in District Court - Statutory condition precedent to certificate of renewal - Statutory condition requiring hotel to be registered - Statutory condition applicable to renewal of licences initially granted pursuant to s.2(2) of Act of 1902 - Applicant submitting that no proof that initial licence of his premises was so granted by Circuit Court in 1978 - Certificate of registrar made pursuant to order of Circuit Court in 1978 - Certificate of registrar stating that initial applicant entitled to receive "an excise licence, described as a hotel licence..." - Only jurisdiction for order of Circuit Court being s.2(2) of Act of 1902 - Presumption that Circuit Court acted within its jurisdiction in 1978, despite absence of a specific reference to s.2(2) in order of that court - Held that there was evidence that the order of 1978 was made pursuant to s.2(2) of Act of 1902 - Held that the statutory condition barred renewal of licence for applicant's hotel premises, notwithstanding successful applications for renewal in recent years - Licensing (Ir.) Act, 1902, s.2(2) - Intoxicating Liquor Act, 1960, s.20 - (148/84 - Supreme Court - 14/2/86) - [1986] IR 763 - [1986] ILRM 471

|Application of Bannerton|


JUDGMENT delivered on the 14th day of February 1986 by FINLAY C.J. [Nem Diss]


This is an appeal by the Applicant brought pursuant to leave of the High Court granted under section 52(2) of the Courts (Supplemental Provisions) Act 1961against the order and judgment of the High Court, delivered by Barron J., answering questions raised in a Consultative Case Stated by District Justice Oliver Macklin, then the Justice assigned to the District No. 8, District Court Area of Ballinasloe, pursuant to section 52(1) of the Courts (Supplemental Provisions) Act 1961.


The questions of law arose in the course of an application before the learned District Justice for the renewal of an intoxicating liquor licence. The material facts are these.


On the 29th day of March 1960, the Circuit Court of Justice sitting at Loughrea in the County of Galway, made an order entitling one Daniel Scannell to receive an excise licence, described as an ordinary hotel licence, pursuant to the provisions of subsection (2) of section 2 of the Licensing (Ireland) Act 1902, for the sale of intoxicating liquors for consumption for retail on or off the premises known as Cuill na Greine, situate at Dunloe Hill, Ballinasloe, in the County of Galway. Subsection (2) of section 2 of the Licensing Ireland Act 1902, as amended, permits the granting of a licence in respect of premises not licensed prior to 1902, which had available as a hotel, for the accommodation of travellers, not less than ten separate bedrooms in a rural area. The said licence was subsequently regularly renewed, and in September 1963, Daniel Scannell obtained an order from the District Court, pursuant to section 19(1) of the Act of 1960, extinguising an ordinary seven-day licence with the effect that the prohibition previously existing in respect of his licence confining him to serving through a dispense bar was cancelled.


In November 1968 the licence was transferred to Donal Scannell and was then subsequently renewed in his name. In February 1976 there was an ad interim transfer of the licence to Owen Gannon, a nominee of Harry Pearson, but this ad interim transfer does not appear to have been confirmed nor the licence renewed at the annual licensing sessions in September 1976.


On the 28th July 1978 the Circuit Court, sitting in Galway, declared that Owen Gannon was entitled to receive an excise licence described as a hotel licence for the sale of intoxicating liquor for consumption on his premises known as Mount Hotel, situate at Dunloe Hill, Ballinasloe in the County of Galway. The declaration recited that the order was made "pursuant to the provisions of the aforementioned Acts". The order is entitled at the head thereof:

"In the Matter of the Licensing Acts 1833 to 1962"


In the Matter of Section 15(1) of the Intoxicating Liquor Act 1960


And in the Matter of Section 13 and Section 23 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act 1960


And in the Matter of Section 17 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act 1960as amended by Section 32 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act 1962"


The licence thus granted was renewed at the annual licensing sessions in October 1978, and in March 1979 an ad interim transfer was granted to the present Applicant, Declan Bannerton. This was confirmed and the licence renewed at the annual licensing sessions in September 1979, September 1980 and September 1981.


Prior to the application for a further renewal in September 1982 the Superintendent of the Garda Siochana for the area of Ballinasloe served, in May of 1982, notice of intention to oppose the renewal on the Applicant and one of the grounds advanced was that the premises was not a hotel as no certificate of registration as an hotel had been issued by Bord Failte since 1975. At the hearing before the learned District Justice this fact was established or conceded. The question raised in the...

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