Pavement licence

A pavement licence allows the licence-holder to place removable furniture in some outdoor spaces next to their premises.

Business and Planning Act 2020

The Business and Planning Act, published on 22 July 2020, incorporates a range of provisions to assist  businesses as they reopen in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. This includes:

A new “Pavement Licence” regime, administered by us, designed to make it easier for premises in England, serving food and drink such as bars, restaurants and pubs to seat and serve customers outdoors through temporary changes to planning procedures and alcohol licensing.


The measures in the Act 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, in the form of a ‘pavement licence’, from us for the placement of furniture such as tables and chairs on the pavement outside their premises. 

Regulatory amendments that came into force on 10 August 2023 have extended the existing Pavement Licence provisions until 30 September 2024. Read the Business and Planning Act 2020 (Pavement Licences) (Coronavirus) (Amendment) Regulations 2023 in full here.

Please note that a renewal option for Pavement Licences was not incorporated into the Business and Planning Act 2020, therefore, all current licence holders must apply for a new licence as it is not possible to renew.  Any licence granted after 10 August 2023 will be valid until the revised date of 30 September 2024.

In exercising its functions, the local authority have regard to any guidance issued under the Act, this includes enforcement and revocation powers, as well as a series of local and national conditions which can be attached to licences so that the council can protect public safety and amenity.

Applicants are advised to read the government issued guidance along with our pavement licence policy (below) so they are informed of the full process prior to application.