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Temporary Pavement Licences

Outdoor seating is one way that businesses can operate safely, while giving customers as much space as possible. If businesses do not have sufficient space of their own, they can apply for a licence to use nearby adopted highway to help them do so, where appropriate.

The Council is now accepting applications for temporary pavement licences to adopted highway, as part of the Government's recovery roadmap from this latest Lockdown. This page will give you details on how to apply and the information you need to provide as part of your application.

Government guidance and legislation has now been extended, allowing hospitality businesses to apply to use appropriate parts of the pavement until end of September 2023.

If you wish to place an outside seating area on an adopted road, footpath or pavement, you would normally need to apply to Devon County Council for permission. However, this Council is now tasked with granting temporary Covid-19 Pavement Licences, for this extended recovery period. Please use this application process below for pavement licences for use of the adopted highway.

To view current applications that are open for consultation, please see below.

What furniture can be permitted by a temporary pavement licence?

The furniture that can be permitted by a temporary pavement licence includes;

  • Counters or stalls for selling or serving food or drink
  • Tables, counters or shelves on which food or drink can be placed
  • Chairs, benches or other forms of seating; and
  • Umbrellas, barriers and other articles used in connection with the outdoor consumption of food or drink

Furniture should not be permanently fixed and should be easily moved and stored away outside the times of the licence.

What is the Process?

In line with the issued guidance, the following process will be in place until September 2023;

  • Applications should be made using the pavement licence application form.
  • All approved licences will run until 30 September 2023 unless a shorter period is requested.
  • Applications will be determined within 10 working days (excluding bank holidays) from the day after the application is made.
  • If the application is not determined within the 10 working day period, the application will be deemed to have been granted for a period of a year, but not past 30 September 2023.
  • West Devon Borough Council will consult with the emergency services, Devon County Council, parish or town councils and disability groups.
  • West Devon Borough Council will list current applications on their webpages.
  • A fee of £100.00 will apply.

What do I need to do as an applicant?

The applicant must have public liability insurance for a minimum of £5 million. A copy of the certificate must be submitted as part of the application.

The applicant is required to affix a notice to the premises, so it is easily visible and legible to the public on the day after the application is confirmed as live by the local authority. The notice must remain in place for 5 working days beginning the day after the application is confirmed as live.

A template notice will be sent to applicants to display.

The applicant must keep evidence (dated photographs) that the notice is in place for this period.

The applicant is encouraged to talk to neighbouring businesses and occupiers prior to applying to the local authority, and so take any issues around noise, and nuisance into consideration as part of the process.

How can I apply?

Please use the button below to send us your application. Please make sure you have read the Guidance notes and the Terms and Conditions before submitting your application.

Apply for a pavement licence

Frequently Asked Questions

What will the council consider when determining an application?

  • Public health and safety
  • Public amenity
  • Accessibility
  • Comments on applications should be submitted to

See the government webpage for more detailed information.

Where can I have a temporary pavement licence?

A pavement licence can be applied for on highway land, such as pavements, to which vehicle access is restricted or prohibited.

There isn't enough space outside my premises, but my neighbour has advised that I can place my furniture outside their premises - is this allowed?

Applications where this applies would be approved providing there are no concerns relating to the safety of the highway user. The ability to implement social distancing guidelines must not be compromised.

However, you will be expected to provide written confirmation of permission from your neighbour.

There isn't enough space outside my premises, but there is space across the road - would this be approved?

Furniture placed away from the premises would be approved based on the following;

  • The applicant has full responsibility for the furniture
  • Tables and chairs are used for take away food and drink purposes only

How does this interact with other regulatory process, such as alcohol licensing?

It is important to note 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 the applicant has a licence to serve alcohol on-premises, temporary amendments to the Licensing Act 2003 have been put in place. This will allow them to sell alcohol for consumption off the premises, without needing to apply for a licence variation.

Do I need planning permission?

No. Once a licence is granted, or deemed to be granted, the applicant will also benefit from deemed planning permission to use the land for anything done pursuant to the licence while the licence is valid.

Temporary Pavement Licences - Terms and Conditions

You can find the full Terms and conditions for the temporary pavement licences here.

Temporary Pavement Licences - Guidance Notes

South Hams and West Devon Councils continue to support hospitality businesses by granting rights to use parts of the highway to restore the vitality of town centres.

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