On 23 June, the Prime Minister set out further changes to lockdown measures in England and announced that restaurants, pubs and hotels could reopen in England from 4 July and the 2m distancing rule is being reduced to 1m plus. Updated guidance can be found here.
Westminster City Council has published guidance for pubs, bars and restaurants in response to questions they have received and to highlight any other information that may be useful. You can find them on the Council’s website here.
Westminster City Council has released proposals to support the hospitality sector as it re-opens on 4 July, after three months of lockdown. The proposals include nearly 50 schemes comprising timed closures of certain roads, widened pavements or more tables and chairs on roads which are already closed or pedestrianised, stretching from Paddington to Covent Garden and including the Marble Arch London BID area.
We’re delighted that our proposals to support hospitality clusters in Connaught Village and Seymour Place, part of our Recovery Plan, have been included, as well as locations on George Street, enabling our cafes, restaurants, bars and hotels to provide additional external seating for customers and guests with social distancing measures in place.
Fast Track Tables and Chairs Applications
Westminster are introducing temporary measures to help businesses apply for a fast-track licence to use outdoor space for tables and chairs, and sell alcohol using a Temporary Event Notice.
Westminster City Council published guidance for fast-track applications for table and chairs on 25 June. Westminster also published a licensing update on 8 July. For all enquiries you can call the Licensing Advice Line on 020 7641 4141.
Ahead of restaurants, pubs and cafes reopening on 4 July, businesses can apply for a tables and chairs license via Westminster Council’s new fast track application process.
Almost 1,000 ideas were submitted to the City Council, and the ambitious approach helps more businesses to trade outdoors quickly, safely and easily; the only way some can survive while social distancing measures remain in place.
The proposals to support the hospitality sector are dependent on Government bringing forward appropriate legislative change, giving Councils the ability to award tables and chairs licences for flexible periods up to a year.
The schemes are concentrated in a small area of Westminster, but the wider policy approach applies everywhere, and any business can apply for more tables and chairs. Businesses are asked to work together to consolidate deliveries and waste servicing, which makes street closures possible. Likewise, businesses are asked to assist with signage, marshalling of closures and management of outside spaces to prevent queues and vertical drinking.
Update – 24 Juy 2020
The Government has introduced a new pavement licence for placing removable furniture over certain highways next to premises, for the sale, or service and consumption, of food and drink. Pavement licences replace Westminster City Council’s existing fast-track table and chairs licences.
Planning permission is not required and businesses that have already applied for a fast-track table and chairs licence will not need to re-apply.
The licence will allow businesses to use more of the space outside of their premises, helping them to be COVID-19 secure whilst protecting as many hospitality jobs as possible.
Click here to apply.