If you intend to seek employment as a door supervisor (often known as a 'bouncer'), you must undertake an approved training course and be licensed by the Security Industry Authority (SIA).


You will need a licence if you are responsible for security, protection, screening the suitability of people entering premises or dealing with conflict in pubs, clubs and other licensed premises open to the public.

You will need a licence:

  • if you work as a door supervisor under contract for a client, or if you work in house;
  • if you are a supervisor, manager, director or partner, or a sole trader providing door supervision staff;
  • if you are a manager or supervisor under contract who manages door supervisors who are also under contract.

Remember, it is not your job title that counts - it's the work that you do that may be licensable. However, you will NOT need a licence:

  • if you only check tickets, invitations or passes - for instance if you are a cinema or theatre usher;
  • if you are a pub landlord who takes on some managerial or supervisory responsibility in place of the person who contracted in door supervisors;
  • if you are not responsible for the day-to-day work and are employed to provide support, for instance if you are an administration assistant for a firm dealing with door supervisors.

Next steps

If you are front-line staff, you must be over 18, pass an identity and criminal record check and have the right SIA-approved qualification in order to get an SIA licence.

If you are non-front-line staff, such as a manager or supervisor, you will need to pass a criminal record check and an identity check. You will not need to take the training.

A licence application pack can be requested in two ways:

By telephone : 0844 892 1025

Through the web site: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-an-sia-licence

Security Industry Authority, PO Box 1293, Liverpool, L69 1AX. Fax : 0844 892 0975  email: info@the-sia.org.uk

For organising a criminal record check, contact the following:

Criminal Records Bureau (CRB), Customer Services, CRB, PO Box 110, Liverpool, L69 3EF  Information line: 0870 9090811  

Overseas enquiry line: 0870 0100450  Website: Directgov