Business and Planning Bill 2020 published
Richard Taylor, 25th June, 2020
This new Bill was published on 25th June 2020 and is intended to make it easier for operators to trade outside by introducing a new fast track streamlined pavement licence application process and to relax the rules on off sales and deliveries for premises that have an on licence only.
The headlines are as follows –
The bill proposes a new streamlined fast-track approach to pavement licences. Briefly these are as follows:
- Applications can be made electronically
- The maximum fee to be sought by the local authority is £100
- The burden is on the local authority to consult although the applicant is required to display a notice on the day that the application is submitted. The notice must remain in situ for 5 working days
- The local authority has 7 days to make its determination which could be to grant, refuse or grant a smaller space for the pavement licence than requested
- If the local authority does not make that determination within 7 days then the application is deemed granted
- The pavement licence can be time-limited but would last for a minimum of 3 months
- If there is no time limit specified by the local authority then the pavement licence will expire on 30th September 2021
- Conditions can be attached – these may be local conditions attached by the local authority or conditions issued from central government
- Licences can be revoked if conditions are breached, the application was misleading, the notices were not displayed (it is therefore recommended that applicants keep photographic evidence to prove display if necessary) or where the tables and chairs cause risks to health and safety or cause a public nuisance
- Where a pavement licence is granted planning permission for the use of the area is deemed granted
The bill also extends off sales and the ability to undertake deliveries to premises whose premises licence is for on sales only. The headlines are as follows:
- No application is necessary. This extension is automatic
- The off sales hours will be the same as those for which on sales are permitted
- Premises who have previously been refused off sales or had off sales removed on review within the last 3 years are excluded
- Conditions on licences relating to off sales will be suspended eg conditions limiting off sales to hours shorter than on sales hours or conditions requiring that off sales be only in sealed containers
- A new off sales review process is created in the event that off sales cause problems
The second reading of the bill is scheduled for Monday 29th June 2020. Hopefully it will proceed without amendment and it will assist operators as they reopen.
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Richard Taylor is the head of our nationally renowend Licensing team. One of the most experienced Licensing lawyers in the country, Richard has dealt with everything imaginable throughout his career and counts major supermarket chains, national retailers, hotel operators, cinema operators, betting companies and pub companies amongst his clients.