The Covid-19 pandemic has affected businesses across the economy causing many to cease trading for several months while others have had to significantly modify their operations.
As the economy started to re-open, on 25 June 2020 the government announced a further and urgent relaxation to planning and licensing laws to help the hospitality industry recover from the coronavirus lockdown by removing short term obstacles that could get in their way.
The Business and Planning Act makes it easier for premises serving food and drink such as bars, café’s, restaurants and pubs, as lockdown restrictions are lifted but social distancing guidelines remain in place to seat and serve customers outdoors through temporary changes to planning procedures and alcohol licensing.
The measures included in the Act modify provisions in the Licensing Act 2003 to provide automatic extensions to the terms of on-sales alcohol licences to allow for off-sales. It will be a temporary measure to boost the economy, with provisions lasting until the end of September 2022.
The Act also introduces a temporary fast-track process for these businesses to obtain permission, in the form of a “pavement licence”, from Bromley Council for the placement of furniture such as tables and chairs on the pavement outside their premise which will enable them to maximise their capacity whilst adhering to social distancing guidelines.
Our pavement licence policy (PDF - 143.94 KB) covers the temporary permission for pavement licences under the Business and Planning Act which are scheduled to expire on 30 September 2022.
This policy will be reviewed from time to time should changes occur in relevant legislation, the nature of pavement café’s generally, relevant social distancing measures, or as a result of local considerations within the borough.
If you wish to place tables and chairs on the public highway outside of your premises, you will need a pavement licence issued under these provisions.
Licences are issued at Bromley Council's discretion and we will refuse applications where there is not enough space on the pavement for your tables and chairs without causing disruption, obstruction or inconvenience to other street users.
Tables and chairs on private forecourts do not require a street trading licence but the private forecourt must all be associated with the main business.
The cost of a licence is £100 and it will be granted until 30 September 2021. After this date, you will be able to renew this licence until 30 September 2022
The licence will be issued subject to the conditions shown in the current pavement licensing policy. Additionally it will be subject to any mandatory conditions set by the Secretary of State in respect of pavement licences issued under these provisions
Applications and payments for pavement licences will only be accepted online and all communication will be undertaken electronically.