Saturday, 12 April 2008
Ayr Racecourse all set for the Scottish Grand National Festival
By: Iain Ferguson
SCOTLAND’S premier jumps meeting, the Coral Scottish Grand National Festival takes place at Ayr racecourse on Friday 18 April and Saturday 19 April, with 15 races over the two days.
Prize money for the meeting is at an all-time high of £563,000 and on Saturday there are two races counting for the BHA Order of Merit Series - the Coral Scottish Grand National which carries a prize fund of £200,000 and the £100,000 Samsung Electronics Scottish Champion Hurdle.
[Pictured: Hot Weld, winner of the Scottish Grand National 2007.]
Other major races over the two days include on Friday 18 April the £30,000 Coral Supporting Poppyscotland Mares Only Handicap Hurdle over two miles and the Hillhouse Quarry Handicap Chase, also with £30,000 in prize money, over two miles four furlongs.
On Coral Scottish Grand National Day, the Ashleybank Investments Future Champion Novices’ Chase over two miles four furlongs has £50,000 on offer, while the Albert Bartlett & Sons Handicap Chase over two miles has £30,000 in prize money.
There are many other attractions over the two days, including a live appearance after racing on Friday by Irish folk rock band The Saw Doctors. Always popular with the racing fraternity, this five-piece band will play in the new £4.5 million Grandstand Bar which will open for the first time that day.
While The Saw Doctors are playing in the Grandstand Bar, the Horseshoe Bar will have a disco blasting out the latest sounds. And on both days the party mood will be obvious as soon as the doors open and the samba sounds of Beats of Brazil will be heard in the paddock area.
On Saturday, the Criterion Jazz Band will also be playing during the afternoon, and on both days racegoers will arrive to the sounds of traditional Scottish music played by pipers. And after racing on Saturday, Reload will play in the Horseshoe Bar.
Another splendid new facility opening on Friday 18 April is the Owners Bar situated on the ground floor of the Princess Royal Stand. This luxurious Bar will not only cater for owners and trainers but also Owners Bar members who pay a special premium rate to join. In addition to bar and restaurant facilities there is also an exclusive betting shop.
To book, log on to www.ayr-racecourse.co.uk or by telephone 0870-8505666.
Ayr Racecourse and the associated Western House Hotel are members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.
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Wednesday, 9 April 2008
Frazer Coogans advise licensees that
proper advice is essential during transition
By: Ian S Morman, Solicitor (pictured below).
Frazer Coogans Solicitors, Ayrshire, Scotland.
MOST owners of licensed premises and holders of off-sales licences will be aware of the important changes now underway to licensing law in Scotland.
The transition or transfer period from the present alcohol licensing legislation, the Licensing (Scotland) Act 1976, to the new legislation, the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005, started on 1 February 2008. The transition period will run for nineteen months, until the 1 September 2009. All licences and regular extensions under the ‘old’ system in operation on 1 February 2008, when the transition period begins, will automatically be extended to 1 September 2009.
Under the 2005 Act there are two sorts of licence, and licensees need both - a Premises Licence, a licence authorising the sale of alcohol on the premises, and a Personal Licence which authorises an individual person to supervise or authorise the sale of alcohol. An applicant for a Personal Licence must be in possession of the new, prescribed, Licensing Qualification.
To apply for a new Premises Licence under the 2005 Act, a licensee must submit to the Council an Application Form (and the appropriate fee), an Operating Plan, and a Layout Plan. The provisions for the form of the Layout Plan are very detailed, and it is important that appropriate professional assistance is sought to prepare an acceptable Layout Plan.
Although the Scottish Government have given the impression that the application for the new licences is a straightforward one which most licensees can deal with themselves, in reality licensees will require to instruct the appropriate property professional who can provide a properly prepared Layout Plan of the Premises, and also to consult with their independent legal adviser to discuss and prepare their Operating Plan and the Application Form. Careful consideration is required of the detail to be incorporated in the Operating Plan and Application Form to avoid damaging complications at a later date.
The new licensing regime and the transition procedures will require licensees to undertake a substantial amount of preparatory work in advance of the final lodging date in order to ensure that the Application meets the necessary standards. In addition to the professional fees involved, the application fees for the new licence are set at a much higher level than those under the 1976 Act, and the high costs and the complexity involved in the transitional application process have led some licensees to seriously consider closing down their businesses prior to the start of the new licensing regime.
But Frazer Coogans Solicitors can reassure licensees that with the proper professional advice and assistance the complexity of transition can be successfully negotiated.
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Frazer Coogans Solicitors
46 Dalblair Road
Ayr KA7 1UQ
Contact: Norman Geddes, Senior Partner
Tel: 01292 280499
Fax: 01292 611645
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