CourtRoyal Court
Judge(Ereaut, Deputy Bailiff and Jurats Pallot, de Faye, Pepin, Lloyd, Luce, Hyland, Hamilton and Ryan):
Judgment Date22 February 1971
Date22 February 1971
(Ereaut, Deputy Bailiff and Jurats Pallot, de Faye, Pepin, Lloyd, Luce, Hyland, Hamilton and Ryan):

L.A. Wheeler for the appellant;

P.L. Crill, Attorney General, for the Gambling Licensing Authority.

Administrative Lawjudicial reviewreview of discretionary powersstrong case to be made out for overturning exercise of discretionappeal court to be satisfied wrongly exercised

Administrative Lawtribunalsdecisions on applicationsif no appeal provision, decision not to be questioned in court, save to extent that may question observance of statutory rules

GamblingGambling Licensing Authorityappealsstatutory appeal to be against Authority's decision and not on quality of original applicationno hearing de novo and strong case to be made out for overturning original discretionary decision

GamblingGambling Licensing Authoritydecisions on applicationsAuthority to give reasons for decisionsif fails, court may compel to do so



With as much truth as ever attaches to generalisation it can be said that, until the year 1964, gambling in the Island was unlawful.

In that year the States enacted the Gambling (Jersey) Law, 1964, which maintained the existing law, but went on to provide that the States might make regulations

"making lawful, in such circumstances and subject to such conditions as may be specified in the regulations, such forms of gambling as may be so specified."

That Law, moreover, constituted a Gambling Control Committee

"for the purposes of exercising the powers conferred, and performing the duties imposed, on the Committee by regulations."

By the regulations, that is to say, the Gambling (Licensing Provisions) (Jersey) Regulations, 1965 (to which we hereinafter refer as "the Regulations"), there was constituted a Gambling Licensing Authority. That Authority consists of a chairman and two other members drawn from a panel of seven Jurats appointed by the Superior Number of the Royal Court.

One of the duties of the Authority is to receive and consider applications for bookmakers' licences. For that purpose, the Authority is required to sit in public, and at the audience, the applicant, the Attorney General, the Committee and the objectors (if any) have the right to be heard. Paragraph (1) of Regulation 8 of the Regulations provides

"The Authority in deciding whether or not an application for a licence should be granted, shall have regard to the interests of the public in general."

In paragraphs (2) and (3) of that Regulation are set out the circumstances which require the Authority to refuse applications, and in paragraphs (4) and (5) of that Regulation are set out the circumstances in which the Authority may refuse applications.

On 7th January, 1970, the appellant made application to the Authority for the provisional grant of a betting office licence in respect of the premises No. 8 Caledonia Place, in the Parish of St. Helier. The application was adjudged on the 19th March, 1970. Those heard were the appellant, Her Majesty's Attorney General, objectors, and the Constable of St. Helier. The Authority refused the application

"on grounds

(1) that the Authority is not satisfied as to the necessity for the grant having regard to the demand for the time being in the neighbourhood for the facilities afforded by a licensed betting office and to the number of such offices for the time being available to meet that demand (Regulation 8(5)(b)(i)); and

(2) that the Authority is satisfied that the grant would result in undue congestion of traffic (Regulation 8(5)(c)(iii))."

This appeal is against that refusal, and the issue first raised, and the only issue with which this judgment deals, is the jurisdiction of this Court.

The right of appeal is conferred by Regulation 10(1) (as amended) of the Regulations, which provides

"Any person aggrieved by the refusal, under the provisions of these Regulations, of the grant or renewal of a licence may, within the fourteen days next following the day on which notice of the refusal was delivered to him under the provisions of Regulation 9, appeal to the Superior Number of the Royal Court, in term or in vacation, against the refusal, and the Court may confirm the refusal, or may direct the Authority to grant or renew the licence, or may remit the matter with its opinion thereon to the Authority."

For the appellant it was argued that the Court should act as if it were itself receiving the application and were the Authority constituted to determine it, in other words, that the Court should consider the application "de novo" and express...

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