Temporary Pavement Licence

What is  a Temporary Pavement Licence?

The Business & Planning Act 2020 delegates the issue of Temporary Pavement Licences to the local Council.

The Government has provided full guidance for applicants here.

The objective of this legislation is to promote the use of outdoor spaces for the placing of "Street Furniture" (i.e. tables & chairs) on the highway (as defined by S.115A(1) Highways Act 1980) in front of premises such as pubs, bars, restaurants, cafes, snack bars, coffee shops, and ice cream parlours solely for the consumption of food and drink, in order to minimise the potential spread and transmission of Covid-19, and to help boost the economy. 

Generally, these highways are footpaths restricted to pedestrians or are roads and places to which vehicle access is restricted or prohibited.

The reason why they are called Temporary Pavement Licences is because they will cease to have effect from after 30th September 2021, unless the Government seeks to extend the scheme beyond this date.

Click here for a list of all current Temporary Pavement Licence applications.

How Much Will a Temporary Pavement Licence Cost Me?

Nothing! To help businesses find their way in these difficult and uncertain times, Ashfield District Council has chosen not to charge a fee for this service.

What is "Street Furniture" and what are the basic rules?

Street Furniture is defined as: 

  • Counters / Stalls for selling/serving food and drink, tables, shelves, chairs, benches, other forms of seating, umbrellas, barriers, heaters, and other articles used in connection with the outdoor consumption of food and drink.
  • The Street Furniture must not cause an obstruction. 
  • There must be regard to the needs of disabled persons.
  • Reasonable provisions must be made for an outdoor ‘smoke-free’ area.
  • The Street Furniture must be removed at close of business each day.

How Do I Apply For A Temporary Pavement Licence?

You can download a Temporary Pavement Licence Application Form here. It's very simple to complete, but you will need to also submit a few other items with it, when giving it to us to process:

  • A "Location Plan" to a scale of 1:200 showing the name of the highway, the proposed area applied for (including dimensions), and the positions of the Street Furniture to be placed within the proposed area.
  • Photographic images of the proposes Street Furniture.
  • Proof of the Premises Owners or Lease Holders Consent to your application.
  • Proof of Public Liability Insurance (minimum value of £5,000,000).
  • A copy of the Public Notice (download it here) you must place on the front of the premises facing the highway.

What Happens After I Submit My Application?

A 7 day consultation period that commences on the first working day after you submit your completed application and additional documents to us. The Council will consult with the Highways Department at Nottinghamshire County Council, the Police, and our own Environmental Health, Environmental Protection, Community Response, and Environmental Services Teams.

You must place a Public Notice (download it here) on the front of the premises facing the highway for this same 7 day period.

If there are no objections, or no objections that cannot be overcome during the consultation period, then we will grant you a Temporary Pavement Licence within 7 days of the consultation period ending.

If there are outstanding objections, then a Hearing will be convened to determine your application.

As this is a fast-track approach - all applications must have been determined within 14 days (commencing from the first working day after the application was received by the Council).

The Council has 3 options available to it when determining applications:

  • grant the licence in respect of any or all of the purposes specified in the application,
  • grant the licence for some or all of the part of the highway specified in the application, and impose conditions, or
  • refuse the application.

There is no right of appeal against an application that is refused.

Are There Any Other Rules I Need To Know About?

Any Temporary Pavement Licences that are granted have specific conditions attached automatically (set by the Government and the Council), in order to promote Covid-19 Safe venues and to promote equality, and to prevent obstruction of the highway, and to prevent noise nuisance, littering, and anti-social behaviour.

In some cases, the Council could impose additional conditions designed to promote the above objectives.

So when thinking about your application, consider what impact your proposal may have on pedestrians, wheelchair / mobility aided persons, and vehicles that may need to use the highway where you propose to site your outdoor Street Furniture.

You must also ensure that make provisions for an outdoor "smoke-free area" within any proposed plan.

What Happens If I Do Not Comply With My Licence Conditions?

If a condition imposed on a licence is breached the Council may issue a notice requiring the breach to be remedied and can charge the licence holder for any work the Council has to take put matters right (i.e. clearing up litter, etc).

Ashfield District Council is keen to see businesses prosper and will look to work with you if things don't go quite as planned, but at the same time we also have a duty to protect the rights and well-being of the public.

The Council has the power to revoke a licence 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.

3. 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. It is good practice for local authorities to give reasons where these powers are used.

Where Can I Get More Advice?

The Government has provided Guidance to assist applicant and Councils - click here to download it.

Contact the Licensing Team on 01623 457589 or by email: licensing@ashfield.gov.uk