UKHospitality calls for permanent pavement licences to help hospitality recover

03 March 2022 by
UKHospitality calls for permanent pavement licences to help hospitality recover

UKHospitality has called on the government introduce a permanent pavement licence scheme permanent to help the hospitality sector's recovery.

The trade body said the ability to serve customers outdoors has ensured the survival of some restaurants, pubs and hotels that were unable to serve customers indoors due to coronavirus restrictions.

Responding to a recent Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) call for views on pavement licences, UKHospitality said the temporary scheme, which was introduced during the pandemic and is due to end in September, should stay in place.

UKHospitality called for the scheme to remain cheap and easy for businesses to use. The trade body agreed with a proposed £350 cap on application fees and suggested any new system could encourage local councils to offer subsidised, or free, pavement licences in certain areas.

UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls said: "Pavement licences also revealed our sector's ingenuity and creativity, with some truly striking outdoor spaces being created across the UK – from pods to yurts – and significant levels of investment in features such as lighting and heating.

"It's crucial, therefore, that we press for the pavement licence scheme to made permanent, so that pubs, bars and restaurants struggling to recover from the pandemic can get back on their feet much quicker.

"This has the potential to be a hugely beneficial, low-cost, low admin scheme, and a welcome boost for an industry facing rising costs across the board, including VAT, business rates, rents, staffing and raw goods."

Nicholls added that the scheme had helped local economies recover and could be used to help the government's drive to ‘level-up' areas of the UK.

Image: / Shutterstock

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