Permits and licences

1. Cafe licences

New coronavirus legislation for cafes

From 4 July licensed premises can re-open their doors following the relaxation of lockdown measures. New guidance has been issued by the government on how businesses can re-open safely.

The government is introducing new legislation to encourage businesses to introduce an outdoor area to help reduce the risk of transmission of the virus. For example: tables and chairs on the pavement outside their business. The process for applying for a pavement cafe licence is likely to change and a fast tracked system introduced.

For those businesses applying for the licence before the 30 September 2020, there'll be no fees or charges for a period of 3 months.

Note: the legislation is likely to be temporary until 30 September 2021. Businesses who want to keep their outside seating after this date, will be subject to the pre-coronavirus application process and charging.

Please read the highway cafe policy (PDF 212Kb) before completing the form. All conditions must be met to make sure those using the roads and pavements are kept safe.

The form and any additional documents should be emailed to:

Tables and chairs can only be put on the highway with our permission. Permission will only be given if there's a minimum of 1.5 metres of clear space remaining.

If it's a busy pathway then a greater amount of clear space will be required.

Appropriate barriers and other safety measures will need to be in place as identified in the terms and conditions.

Note: your ability to use the space outside your business may be effected by the terms of your lease and you must check this before you make an application.

To reduce conflict, all applicants must consult with neighbouring businesses and homes about the placement of cafe furniture before the application is made. Written evidence of the following must be provided:

  • a list of those who were consulted
  • the responses to the consultation

If a satisfactory agreement cannot be reached between the parties involved then we may refuse to issue or revoke a licence for that activity.

Licence costs

  • over 5 square metres: Initial annual licence: £366. Annual renewal: £182.50. Initial three year licence: £731
  • under 5 square metres: Initial annual licence: £182. Annual renewal: £91.50. Initial three year licence: £365
  • change of ownership: £26

Before filling in this application you should read the highway cafe policy (PDF 212Kb).

Apply for a cafe licence