The new Business and Planning Bill is set to make getting a pavement licence much easier and give you automatic off sales entitlement.

Pavement licences

The measures in this Bill are designed to support businesses selling food and drink such as cafes, pubs and restaurants by introducing a temporary fast-track process for these businesses to obtain permission from the local council for the placement of furniture such as tables and chairs on the pavement outside their premises. 

This will enable them to maximise their capacity whilst adhering to social distancing guidelines. The current process for businesses to obtain these licences can be costly and time-consuming. This Bill includes temporary measures to place a cap on the application fee for businesses (£100), enforcement and revocation powers so councils can protect public safety and amenity, and introduces a new 14 day determination, ensuring that businesses can obtain licenses in a timely and cost effective manner aiding to their financial recovery.

Off sales

The measures included in this Bill 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 2021.

These measures will make it possible for licensed premises that have only an on-sales licence to sell alcohol for consumption off the premises.  This will allow businesses to trade whilst keeping social distancing measures in place inside.

Stephen McCaffrey

Regulatory defence barrister specialising in alcohol and entertainment licensing law, appeals and defence.

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Licensing Defence Barristers are leading licensing barristers dealing with all legag matters relating to alcohol, entertainment and late-night licences.