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Apply for a Pavement Licence

What is a Pavement Licence?

A pavement licence allows the licence holder to place removable furniture over certain highways adjacent to the premises in relation to which the application was made, for certain purposes.

Businesses, which sell food or drink for consumption on and off the premises may apply for a pavement licence.

There is a 7 day consultation period and a 7 day period to decide the outcome of the application. You will receive a decision from us between 8 and 14 days after you have successfully submitted an application.  

  1. Who can apply?

    Businesses using (or proposing to use) premises for the sale of food or drink for consumption (on or off the premises) can apply for a licence. Businesses that are eligible include: public houses, cafes, bars, restaurants, snack bars, coffee shops, and ice cream parlours.

  2. What kind of furniture can be used?

    • counters or stalls for selling or serving food or drink;
    • tables, counters or shelves on which food or drink can be placed;
    • chairs, benches or other forms of seating; and
    • umbrellas, barriers, heaters and other articles used in connection with the outdoor consumption of food or drink.

    This furniture is required to be removable. In principle removable means it is not a permanent fixed structure, and is able to be moved easily, and stored away of an evening.

  3. What do I need to provide with my application?

    • evidence of public liability insurance, which also relates to the area covered by this licence
    • a plan showing the location of the premises shown by a red line, so the application site can be clearly identified on an OS Base Map (see Plan section for details of what needs to be on the plan).
    • a plan clearly showing the proposed area covered by the licence in relation to the highway, with measurements clearly shown (see Plan section for details of what needs to be on the plan)..
    • Covid-19 risk assessment.

  4. Plan requirements

    The plan of the licensed area must show the locations of furniture including tables, chairs, barriers and their proximity to any other structures or fixtures on the street e.g. bins, street traders, benches etc.

    The plan must be drawn to scale, or the measurements of the furniture, distance between furniture, proximity of other structures and the remaining space on the highway must be shown on the plan.

    A red line must be drawn to show the proposed licensed area.

    If drawn to scale, the scale must be shown on the plan


  5. Consultation

    Once the information is submitted there are 14 days from the day after the application is made  to consult on, and determine the application. This consists of 7 days for public consultation, and then 7 days to consider and determine the application after the consultation.

    The consultees for the application are: Highway Authority, Police, Environmental Health, Ward Member and Parish/Town Council

  6. Duration of licences

    Licences will normally be valid for a year, however, they may be issued to cover a shorter period of time, if necessary.

  7. How do I apply?

    Application process

    • Complete an application form and provide supporting documents
    • Pay the application fee of £100 (non-refundable)
    • Display a notice at the premises starting from the day the application is submitted. Download the notice here.
    • The process takes 14 days (7 day consultation period and 7 days to determine the application)
    • Applications can be granted (in whole or part), conditions imposed or refused
    • Comply with the condition that clear routes of access must be maintained and any other conditions on the licence
    • Position/layout of the furniture must comply with social distancing requirements


  8. Conditions

    It is a condition that clear routes of access along the highway must be maintained, taking into account the needs of disabled people, and the recommended minimum footway widths and distances required for access by mobility impaired and visually impaired people as set out in Section 3.1 of Inclusive Mobility.

    Section 3.1 of Inclusive Mobility

    A clear width of 2000mm allows two wheelchairs to pass one another comfortably. This should be regarded as the minimum under normal circumstances. Where this is not possible because of physical constraints 1500mm could be regarded as the minimum acceptable under most circumstances, giving sufficient space for a wheelchair user and a walker to pass one another.

    The absolute minimum, where there is an obstacle, should be 1000mm clear space. The maximum length of restricted width should be 6 metres (see also Section 8.3). If there are local restrictions or obstacles causing this sort of reduction in width they should be grouped in a logical and regular pattern to assist visually impaired people.

    It is also recommended that there should be minimum widths of 3000mm at bus stops and 3500mm to 4500mm by shops though it is recognized that available space will not always be sufficient to achieve these dimensions.

    Where a cycle track runs alongside a footway or a footpath best practice is to physically segregate the two as advocated in Local Transport Note (LTN) 2/86 Shared Use by Cyclists and Pedestrians.

    If this is not possible, appropriate tactile surfaces should be used to identify the cycle and pedestrian paths (see Section 4.5). The cycle track should be at least 1400mm wide with the cycle symbol on the ground every 50 yards. The pedestrian part should meet the standards given earlier in this section and should be separated from the cycle track by a raised dividing line 150mm wide and 12 to 20mm high, with a 50mm wide top face.”

    Other conditions may be added to the licence.

  9. Enforcement

    If a condition imposed on a licence is breached, a notice requiring the breach to be remedied may be issued and action to cover costs may be taken.

    A licence may be revoked in the following circumstances:

    1. For breach of condition, (whether or not a remediation notice has been issued) or
    2. Where:
      • There are risks to public health or safety – for example by encouraging users to breach government guidance on social distancing by placing tables and chairs too close together;
      • the highway is being obstructed (other than by anything permitted by the licence);
      • there is anti-social behaviour or public nuisance – for example, the use is increasing the amount of noise generated late at night and litter is not being cleaned up;
      • it comes to light that the applicant provided false or misleading statements in their application – for example they are operating a stall selling hot food and had applied for tables and chairs on which drinks could be consumed; or
      • the applicant did not comply with the requirement to affix the notice to notify the public for the relevant period.
    1. The local authority may also revoke the licence where all or any part of the area of the relevant highway to which the licence relates has become unsuitable for any purpose for which the licence was granted or deemed to be granted. For example, the licensed area (or road adjacent) is no longer to be pedestrianised or works on the highway.

  10. Tacit consent

    If your application is not determined within 14 days from the date of submission, your application will be treated as being granted.

  11. Appeals

    There isn’t a statutory route to appeal decisions.

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