Caernarfonshire Quarter Sessions Licensing Records

Scope and Content

Records of the Caernarfonshire Quarter Sessions, 1626-1945, relating to alehouse licensing, including alehousekeepers' recognizances, 1626-1824; Licensing Committee and Compensation Authority draft minutes, 1878-1886; minute books, 1904-1914; rough minute books, 1907-1932; lists of members, 1880-1882; rules and regulations, 1879-1883; correspondence, 1821-1885; returns of licences from Petty Sessions, 1878-1883; returns of general inquiries concerning licensed premises, [c. 1891]; and miscellaneous papers, 1879-1945.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Caernarfonshire Court of Quarter Sessions was responsible for the licensing of keepers of inns and alehouses following the Alehouse Act 1552. The Quarter Sessions included special sittings, known as Brewster Sessions, when each constable presented a list of the names of licensed innkeepers and alehouse keepers in his township. The Wine and Beerhouse Act 1869 required retailers to obtain a their licences from Justices and the Intoxicating Liquor (licensing) Act 1872 obliged the clerks of licensing divisions to keep a register of licenses granted. The divisions constituted the areas formed by the Petty Sessional Divisions, and included Caernarvon, Bangor, Conway, Pwllheli and Eifionydd. In c. 1878, the Court of Quarter Sessions established a County Licensing Committee to confirm the granting of all licences.


Arranged into the following: alehousekeepers' recognizances; Licensing Committee and Compensation Authority; returns; report relating to licensed premises in Caernarfon, April 1892; and miscellaneous.

Conditions Governing Access

No restrictions

Acquisition Information

Source not recorded


Compiled by Richard Burman for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Caernarfon Record Office, Caernarfonshire Quarter Sessions Licensing Records, catalogue; London Metropolitan Archives, Information Leaflet 3, Licensed Victuallers Records, (London, 1998); Hey, David, Oxford Dictionary of Local and Family History, (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1997)

Other Finding Aids

Hard copies of the catalogue are available in Caernarfon Record Office and the National Library of Wales. The catalogue is available online.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright regulations apply.

Appraisal Information

All records deposited at Caernarfon Record Office have been retained.


Accruals are not expected

Related Material

Further licensing records are Caenarfon Record Office, XQS

Geographical Names