The Department for Communities Social Policy Unit, is responsible for the alcohol licensing in Northern Ireland. Evidence from other countries shows a significant relationship between alcohol outlet density, alcohol consumption and alcohol-related harms.
The Northern Ireland Courts and Tribunal Service is responsible for the initial grant and subsequent renewal of liquor licences. Licences are granted/renewed for a 5 year licensing period. Court districts are required to maintain a register in which various details in relation to individual licensed premises are recorded.
The Department for Communities requested the Northern Ireland Courts and Tribunal Service to provide post code details for public houses, off licence premises (which includes supermarkets) and hotels for the latest licensing period which commenced on 1 October 2017. The Department in conjunction with the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA), carried out a mapping exercise of outlet density for the above premises.
The findings will be of help to policy makers and those concerned about the relationship of outlet density to alcohol related problems.