Industry sector:

Pharmacy: Licences


Retail pharmacies and pharmacists in Great Britain must be registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) the regulator for the profession. Pharmacists and pharmacy premises in Northern Ireland must register with the Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland (PSNI).

In order to dispense NHS prescriptions, a contract must be obtained with the local NHS England Regional Team or Health Board or the local Health and Social Services Board (in Northern Ireland).

You will need a wholesale dealer's licence if you plan to supply medicines on a commercial wholesale basis. You can apply for the licence on the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) website.

If you are going to handle denatured alcohol (which used to be called industrial methylated spirits) you will need a licence from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

If you plan to play background music in the pharmacy you will need a Music Licence from PPL PRS Ltd. There is an annual fee for this which you can pay online on the PPL PRS website.

Data protection

Any business which keeps computerised records of customers' details may need to register as a data user with the Information Commissioner's Office. From May 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation introduced additional protection for personal data. Contact the ICO, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF - or visit their website for more information.