Pavement licences

A pavement licence allows the licence holder to place removable furniture over certain highways adjacent to their premises, to easier serve food and drink and maximise capacity with tables and chairs.

Apply for a pavement licence

Furniture that may be used are:

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

This furniture is required to removable and not a fixed structure. This means it can be moved easily and stored away when not in use after the premises are closed.

An application must:

  • specify the premises, and part of the relevant highway which the application is for
  • include a plan showing the location of the premises and a red line covering the area of the proposed pavement licence
  • confirm the purpose the outdoor area will be used for, which must be to sell or serve food or drink, or for consumption of food or drink
  • specify the days of the week and the hours which it is proposed to be used
  • describe the type of furniture to be used, for example tables, chairs and/or stalls
  • be accompanied by evidence of public liability insurance

We recommend that the applicant talks to neighbouring businesses and residents before applying, so they can consider issues regarding noise and nuisance.

The applicant must also display a public notice at the premises which is easily visible and legible to the public. This must be displayed on the day the application is made to the local authority. The notice must be displayed for the public consultation period which is the period of 7 days beginning with the day after the application is submitted to the authority.

Please see the public notice required.

Once the application and all required documents have been received the application will be sent out for consultation. Consultees include Staffordshire county council highways, the Police, environmental health and ward councillors. The consultation period is 7 days starting the day after the application is received. Members of the public can make representations or comments regarding applications by contacting our licensing team.

The local authority has 7 days following the 7 day consultation period in order to determine the application.

Standard national and local conditions will apply to all licences. Some applications may include some specific additional conditions, which will be discussed with the applicant prior to the granting of the licence.

Pavement licences will normally be valid up to 30 September 2021, unless there are significant reasons for granting a licence for a shorter period, such as plans for changes to the highway or road space.

The grant of a pavement licence only permits the placing of furniture on the highway. Other regulatory frameworks still apply such as the need for alcohol licences and the need to comply with registration requirements for food businesses.

If an application is refused the applicant will be notified of the reasons for refusal based on the criteria set out in the Business & Planning Act 2020. If objections to an application are received, this does not mean an automatic refusal. Any objections will be considered and may mean additional conditions added to the licence, or a reduction in hours or the area applied for.

The government has provided draft guidance and guidance for temporary alcohol licensing provisions