Cotswolds Cafe Culture

Cotswold District Council has launched a streamlined application process which will help expand local café culture. 

The Council’s new process will help fast track-applications for licences to place tables and chairs outside pubs and cafes.

The scheme is a response to new government legislation.

Councillor Tony Dale, Cabinet Member for Economy and Skills, said: “We are keen to support businesses in whatever way we can and I am delighted that the government is making it easier to apply, and faster to process, applications for outdoor seating. 

Fastest Council

CDC was one of the fastest councils in the country to pay out small business loans, making the first payments just over a fortnight after the small business loan scheme opened.

Cllr Dale continued: “After a difficult time for the hospitality trade I hope adding tables and chairs for people having a meal or a drink in the sunshine will brighten up our town centres, make it easier for people to socially distance, and bring a bit of continental cafe culture to the Cotswolds.

Supporting Local Business

“For some businesses, the ability to use outdoor space in this way will make the difference between the business remaining viable or not, so this new opportunity is critically important. We are keen to encourage people to shop locally and eat and drink out in their nearby towns and villages to support local businesses.

“We’ll do our bit by making sure we process licences as quickly as possible.”

The government legislation, the Business and Planning Act is designed to make it quicker and easier for hospitality businesses to extend their licenses to cover outdoor seating and tables. This will support effective social distancing.

The council will have 14 days to consult with a range of stakeholders, including the Highways Authority and Ward Members and then decide the outcome of the application.

Businesses can apply through the council website www.cotswold.gov.uk/pavementlicence.