Street cafe licence policy (not on Promenade)

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Blackpool Council welcomes well designed and managed cafes. The aim of this policy is to ensure that premises with the benefit of these licences are well designed and managed so that they enhance the town centre.

The following policy guidelines have been developed to outline issues that will be taken into account when determining applications.

Size and layout

The use of land designated as public highway and other areas where there is public access will not be allowed unless there is at least 1.2 m clear access between the café and the kerb to allow pedestrians to pass by safely.

In a pedestrian zone there must be at least 3.5 m of unobstructed space in front of the café area. In certain busy streets a clear depth requirement will be determined by the council on an ad hoc basis, but such clearance will not be less then 1.8 m.

Where the use directly fronts the premises from which refreshments are served, there must be an unobstructed corridor to the shop entrance of 1.2 m at all times.

The layout of tables, chairs, access points and means of enclosure needs to be considered before an application is made. It is important that the layout of these areas do not provide any obstruction or inconvenience to customers with disabilities and it is important that sufficient space is left between tables for wheelchair access.

A plan identifying the proposed size of the outside area, layout and access points must be submitted with the application for consideration.

Means of enclosure

When in use the area will need to be enclosed to demarcate the licensed area and contain the tables and chairs.

The enclosure should be removed outside of the licensed period or whenever the café is not intending to operate within the licensed period. All tables, chairs, barriers and any other items must be stored within the premises when not in use.

The design of the barrier must be approved by the council. The barriers should be:

  • Lightweight in construction and portable, but stable and robust enough to prevent collapse if accidentally walked into, or in a sudden gust of wind
  • Of a suitable colour, white, pale shades and gaudy colours should be avoided
  • Constructed of metal, plastic or wood. Rope barriers or flexible/retractable tape are not considered suitable.

The council would encourage the use of planters which can be attractive as part of the means of enclosure.

Photographs and/or brochures containing the details of proposed barriers/other means of enclosure should be submitted for approval with a new application and whenever changes to existing enclosures are proposed.

Furniture

The furniture should be of a high quality design and construction. The design must be consistent throughout. Plastic tables and chairs would not enhance the street scene and are unlikely to be approved.

Photographs and/or brochures containing the details of the proposed furniture should be submitted for approval with a new application and whenever changes are proposed.

Management

It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that any aspects of operation and equipment comply with all appropriate legislation and health and safety requirements.

Patrons using the outside area should be seated when using the facilities.

The transfer of food to the outside areas must be through the use of table service. Whilst there is no requirement for table service in respect of drinks, such a service would be encouraged as it ensures regular supervision of the outside areas.

The licence holder will be expected to maintain the tables, chairs and outdoor area in a tidy and orderly manner at all times. All litter, empty/abandoned drinks and used crockery must be removed at regular intervals.

Amplified music in the outside areas is not permitted. Not to erect or permit at any time any ‘A’ boards or other signs within the confines or adjacent to the sites.

The conduct of people within the café area is the responsibility of the operator. Unruly or rowdy behaviour may lead to the suspension, withdrawal or non-renewal of the licence. If incidents do occur, additional conditions for example the use of plastic containers or increased supervision may be added to the licence.

Conditions

Standard conditions are imposed on each licence however the council reserves the right to impose additional conditions, for example CCTV or door supervision, if they feel that it is necessary.

Enforcement

Compliance/enforcement visits will ordinarily be undertaken by officers from Quality Standards and the Bid Team.

Failure to comply with the conditions of licence may result in the suspension or revocation of the licence.

Incidents of nuisance or disorder resulting from the use of the outside area may result in the addition of further conditions to the licence, suspension or revocation.

Fees

The fee charged is dependent on the size of the proposed outside area.

A fee of £20.30 will be charged for each square metre (or part thereof). Taking into account the current economic climate, it has been decided that fees for larger areas will capped at a maximum of £1,010.