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Licensing coronavirus updates

Service updates due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Planning rules to allow pubs and restaurants to operate as takeaways

Last updated on 14 April 2021

As part of the measures the government is introducing to help the hospitality industry during the coronavirus outbreak, the Communities Secretary has confirmed that planning regulations will temporarily be relaxed to allow all pubs and restaurants to operate as takeaways of hot food and drinks to serve people staying at home.

Currently, a planning application for change of use class is required to convert pubs and restaurants to hot food takeaways. Under the emergency measures, the government will allow a temporary change of use without an application. This time limited permitted development right will last for a further 12 months to 23 March 2022.

Operators are reminded however that the sale of hot food and hot drink between 11pm and 5am will still require authorisation for late night refreshment under licensing law. 

Furthermore, the measures only relate to takeaways of hot food and non-alcoholic drinks. Premises licence holders should check their licence conditions and ensure that they are permitted to sell off sales of alcohol before offering takeaways or deliveries of alcohol. 

Further details can be obtained from the GOV.UK website.

Pavement café permits

Last updated on 14 April 2021

Businesses have two choices with regard to applying for Pavement café areas on the highway. Either using the Highway Act, which will provide a permanent provision, all be the process is a little longer and certainly more costly, or to apply under the simpler Business and Planning Act 2020, for temporary permission. If granted this allows use of the land until 30 September 2021 and the government is proposing to extend this until 30 September 2022. The fee is just £100.

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