The countdown to the reform of licensing laws in England and Wales began today with the publication of guidance by the Government.
The transitional period of the act - when applications for conversions to new licences can be made - will start on 7 February 2005.
The guidance published today will help licensing authorities decide how they will implement the reforms, which include flexible opening hours.
Guidance was also issued today to police officers on how they will be able to use extended powers to close down problem premises.
Draft application regulations with forms, proposed fees and other draft regulations will go out for public consultation in August
The draft guidance is available at: http://www.culture.gov.uk/alcohol_and_entertainment