Advice for businesses about plans for new temporary pavement licences
Shropshire businesses are being advised that Shropshire Council cannot currently accept new applications for temporary pavement licences, as the necessary legislation has not yet come into effect and is unlikely to do so before 21 July.
Last week the Government announced proposed new legislation regarding pavement licences to introduce a new streamlined and cheaper route for businesses such as cafes, restaurants and bars to secure a licence to place furniture on the highway. The purpose of this is to support businesses to operate safely while social distancing measures remain in place and to provide much needed income over the summer months, protecting as many hospitality jobs as possible.
Frances Darling, trading standards and licensing operations manager, said
“As the council is unable to accept applications from businesses for a pavement licence, businesses must ensure that if they choose to use, temporarily, any additional or new highway space that it is managed responsibly in order to protect pedestrians, particularly those with mobility or visual impairments and other disabilities.
“Businesses will also need to ensure that all pedestrian and vehicular requirements are considered so as not to cause an obstruction. They must also ensure that the use of an area does not cause a nuisance to local residents or other businesses, that they do not use an area that already has an established use – such as a Saturday market or another trader’s permitted area – that they have adequate public liability insurance, and that they do not endanger the public. Businesses are also advised to ensure the use of the space takes into account the need to provide adequate social distancing.”
Once the legislation is passed businesses will be required to obtain permission from the council and obtain a pavement licence. The council website will be updated with guidance on the application process once the law is brought into effect.
Gwilym Butler, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for communities, place planning and regulatory services, said:
“If the outdoor area is poorly managed, this may lead to objections when your pavement licence application is in its formal consultation period and this will have to be considered as part of the council’s decision on whether or not to grant your application for a pavement licence. Hence, it is very important to follow guidance and keep your customers and the public safe.”
Shropshire Council has produced a new toolkit for businesses offering support and advice about safely reopening as lockdown measures are eased. It’s designed to provide a quick and simple guide to a lot of the information and resources needed to help support businesses during these challenging times.
A new annexe has been added today (3 July) to provide further guidance to businesses planning to reopen from 4 July.
This includes information on:
• Those businesses that can open from 4 July 2020 and those which need to remain closed.
• The commercial use of outdoor space for businesses.
• Trading on the pavement and ‘pop-up’ markets.
• The supply of alcohol.