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Application Process

Your perfect pub

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We have put together a six-step guide explaining how to take a tenancy with us. Our friendly team will be on hand to provide support at every stage of the process, led by our dedicated Recruitment Co-ordinator.

Step 1 - Qualifications

The first thing to do is go online and obtain your Pre-Entry Awareness Training (PEAT) qualification. PEAT is mandatory for any new tenant or lessee who signs an agreement in England and Wales with a pub company or brewery who is a member of the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA). It must be completed at least five days prior to your final interview with us, so the sooner you get started, the better. The training is straightforward and takes about 90 minutes to complete online. Find out more at

If you have not already done so, you will also need to obtain your Level 2 Award for Personal Licence Holders (APLH), allowing you to sell alcohol. You can take the course at the brewery even if you’re not one of our licensees, or there are a number of education centres around the South East. You simply head along for a day of training, which ends with an hour-long assessment consisting of multiple choice questions. Find out more at​​​​​​​

Step 2 – Find your perfect pub

Our available pubs can be viewed here where you can also download their letting details including the rent, available facilities and ingoing costs.  Once you have found a pub you like, we advise you to initially visit discreetly as a customer. We recommend that you visit several times and at different trading times to get a good feel for its offer and existing customer base.

When you’ve found your perfect pub, you need to complete our tenancy application form, available online or call the team on 01795 542132 to receive a pack in the post.

Step 3 – Planning for the future

Once the formal viewing is complete and you are ready to progress, it’s time to meet the Business Development Manager (BDM) responsible for your chosen pub. It will be an informal first meeting, to talk through the business opportunity, the pub and your experience and skills, allowing you to decide if you would like to continue with your formal application.

Your next step is then to undertake a full business review and put together a three year financial plan for the site. We will provide you with sales volumes and industry guidance for overhead figures and offer some basic advice on how the plan should be carried out. We will also provide templates for the business and finance plans and can offer details of independent business/financial advisors if required. These then need to be sent to our Trade Recruitment Co-ordinator and will be passed to the BDM to review.

Step 4 - Your Second Interview

Once your plans have been reviewed, you will be invited into the brewery for a formal second interview with the Tenanted Trade Director or the Tenanted Operations Manager and your BDM.

Step 5 – The Offer and Sign-Up

If successful, you can look forward to receiving a formal tenancy offer from our team. We highly recommend that you seek independent business and financial advice on your plans at this stage, if you haven’t already done so. By now you will have passed your PEAT and ideally obtained your APLH qualification - if not, it must be obtained before we can proceed.

You then visit the Brewery for the official sign-up with your BDM, which includes paying deposits and signing your tenancy agreement. Our dedicated Tenant Induction Co-ordinator will be present to discuss your personalised induction plan, as all Licensees must pass a Shepherd Neame course in Beer and Cellar Management, a financial management course, Level 2 qualification in Food Safety in Catering and Level 2 qualification in Health and Safety in the Workplace. You will discuss how the induction plan will be scheduled and progress within your first six months.

Your BDM will then offer support with your final steps, to instruct a broker, agree a change date, arrange insurance, register for VAT and place your initial order with the brewery.

Step 6 – Open Your Pub!

You are now ready to open the doors to your pub and welcome your customers – but you won’t be left on your own. Your BDM will be a frequent visitor, offering ongoing support across all areas, and helping you to maximise the potential of your pub.

Want to find out more?

Open days

If you are interested in becoming a Shepherd Neame licensee come along to one of our Open Days, a relaxed session where you can chat to our friendly team.

View all open days

Contact us

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to get in touch.
Call our Recruitment Co-ordinator on 01795 542132 or click below to email our recruitment team.