Selective licensing

Selective Licensing Public Notice

Wirral Council - Designation of areas for selective licensing Section 80, Housing Act 2004

Notice is hereby given that on the 27th March 2024 Wirral Council (Town Hall, Brighton Street,  Wallasey, CH44 8ED) in exercise of its powers under Section 80 of the Housing Act 2004  (“the Act”) designated the whole of Paterson Street and the even numbered properties in Park Close, Birkenhead described in the Schedule below as being subject to selective licensing from 1st July 2024.

The designation may be inspected between 9.00 and 17.00 on weekdays at:

Birkenhead Town Hall
Mortimer Street
CH41 5EU

If you are a landlord, a person managing a property, or a tenant of a property within the area of the  designation you are advised to seek advice from the Council on whether your property is affected  by the designation.

If you wish to do this, to obtain a licence or if you require a licence application or any general advice regarding the designation you are advised to contact the Selective Licensing Team within Housing Services at:

Housing Standards Team
Wirral Council
PO Box 290
CH27 9FQ

The designation falls within a description of designations for which the Secretary of State has  issued a General Approval under Section 82 of the Act, namely the Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation and Selective Licensing of Other Residential Accommodation (England) General Approval 2015. Therefore, the designation need not be confirmed and will come into force on 1st July 2024 and unless previously revoked, this designation shall cease to have effect on 31st March 2029.

Upon the designation coming into force on 1st July 2024 any person having control of or managing a licensable property without a licence is liable to prosecution under Section 95(1) of the Act and upon summary conviction is liable to an unlimited fine or under Section 249A a financial penalty not exceeding £30,000. In addition, such a person may be required, pursuant to a rent repayment order, to repay up to 12 months’ rent under the provisions of Section 96 and Section 97 of the Act.


The designation shall have effect to any property situated, at any time during the designation, within the whole of Paterson Street and the even numbered properties of Park Close, Birkenhead. Copy plans of the areas affected and a copy of this notice will be posted on the Wirral Council website and on noticeboards in council buildings in or nearest to the areas subject to the designation.

PDF files below may not be suitable to view for people with disabilities, users of assistive technology or mobile phone devices. PDF maps are more suitable to view on a large screen over a wifi connection.

Selective Licensing aims to improve homes in these areas by ensuring private landlords and agents meet satisfactory standards of tenancy and property management. Wirral Council currently operates two Selective Licensing schemes.

Consultation on proposed new scheme 2024-29

The council's consultation on a proposal to introduce a new Selective Licensing Scheme covering four areas ended on 2 October 2023 . The results of the consultation were presented to Economy, Regeneration and Housing Committee on 6 December 2023 and can be viewed here on the haveyoursay website.


Wirral has areas of low housing demand and almost one in three properties in Wirral’s private rented sector fails to meet the minimum acceptable property condition standard. Homes that fail to meet the required standard have a detrimental impact on the health and welfare of those who live in them, which also impacts on local communities.

The Housing Act 2004 gives local authorities powers to designate areas for the Selective Licensing of private rented property. Wirral currently has two Selective Licensing Schemes covering 10 geographical areas.

It is a criminal offence to let a privately rented property in a designated Selective Licensing area without a licence. Failure to apply for a licence or failure to comply with the conditions of the licence could lead to an unlimited fine on conviction or a Civil Penalty Notice of up to £30,000 being issued by the Council. The Council and/or tenants, including former tenants, may also apply for a Rent Repayment Order (RRO) to reclaim up to 12 months’ rent from the landlord where a property is, or was, required to be licensed.

Holders of licenses are required to comply with the conditions of the Selective Licence (PDF).

Since the start of Selective Licensing in Wirral, approximately 3,500 properties have been licensed and of those inspected by Council officers, 50% were found to be substandard in terms of conditions.

Action taken by the Council has driven up standards with the majority of this achieved through informal action. However, a small number of landlords have been prosecuted for either non-compliance with legal notices and/or not having a licence to operate. Earlier this year, one landlord was formally banned from operating as a landlord. This was the first Banning Order secured by a local authority in North West England.

A team of Healthy Homes Advocates are working in each of the Selective Licensing areas, offering residents free advice and services relating to a range of health and housing issues. Find out more what Healthy Homes can do for you.

Current schemes

The documents below provide maps of each of the two current schemes and a list of addresses, which are subject to periodic review and update.

Address lists are provided as guidance, however any private rented properties located within the LSOA boundary at the time of designation or over the lifetime of the scheme would be liable for a licence.

These files may not be suitable to view for people with disabilities, users of assistive technology or mobile phone devices.

How to apply for a Selective Licence

If you are a property owner or a managing agent of privately rented accommodation within one of the designated selective licensing areas, you can complete an online application.

Apply online for a licence

A paper application can be made, however an additional fee of £50 for the administration of the paper applications will apply. If you wish to be sent paper application forms please email

It is the responsibility of the property owner, manager or managing agent to ensure the property has a valid licence at all times.

Current licence fees

  • Selective Licensing Scheme (designated on 1 April 2019) - £645
  • Selective Licensing Scheme (designated on 1 October 2020) - £595

Various discounts may apply to the above fees.

This file below may not be suitable to view for people with disabilities, users of assistive technology or mobile phone devices.

Selective Licence Bulky Waste Collection Service

The Selective Licence Bulky waste collection service is a free scheme which can be accessed by current licence holders of licenced residential properties situated within Wirral Council’s designated selective licence areas.

This service is operated by the council to assist licence holders in disposing of large household items from rented accommodation. A maximum of 12 bin bags (or equivalent) can be arranged to be collected by appointment with the council on a pre-set day. The maximum number of collections per calendar year has been set at 2.

Email the completed form to:

Penalties and Sanctions


Failure to apply for a licence when required is an offence punishable on summary conviction to an unlimited fine. Alternatively, a Civil Penalty Notice of up to £30,000 can be issued.

Repayment of rent

Tenants including former tenants living at the property whilst it was unlicensed or the Council may apply to the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) for a Rent Repayment Order (RRO) to reclaim up to 12 months’ rent from the landlord.  Apply for an RRO.

Failing to comply with licence conditions

Anyone failing to comply with licence conditions commits an offence punishable on summary conviction to an unlimited fine per offence.  A Civil Penalty Notice up to £30,000 is an alternative sanction available to the local authority.

Selective Licence documents archive

On 1st April 2019 selective licensing commenced within the following four areas of Wirral: Birkenhead Central, Birkenhead West, Hamilton Square and Seacombe St Pauls.

The following links to the public notice:

Selective Licensing Public Notice for 2019-24 scheme

On 1st October 2020 selective licensing commenced within the following six areas of Wirral: Birkenhead South, Egerton North, Egremont South, Egremont Promenade South, Seacombe Library and Tranmere Lairds.

The following links to the public notice:

Selective Licensing Public Notice for 2020-25 scheme

More information

For further guidance on the application process email

You can also write to:

Selective Licensing
Wallasey Town Hall
Brighton Street
CH44 8ED

Members of the public can view the public register that gives the details of landlords who have a licence for their property. To make an appointment to view this register please write to the Selective Licensing Team at the above address or alternatively email

Wirral Council reserves the right to charge for this service in accordance with Section 232(5) of the Housing Act 2004.