Hospitality: Outdoor Trading Licensing …

Hi everyone, 

I hope you are well.

You are no doubt aware of the continuing restrictions facing hospitality sector businesses from April 12th until at least May 117th whereby trading is only permitted outdoors.

Alongside this, regulations licencing trading on pavements and highways have been updated and extended.

Specifically, the process for licencing businesses to trade outdoors was transferred from Warwickshire County Council (WCC) to Warwick District Council (WDC) – though WCC remains in charge of highways (parking space, loading bays, lanes etc). 

Then on the 8th March 2021, Secretary of State, Robert Jenrick issued a letter to Local Authorities extending national guidance and making it easier and cheaper for pubs, restaurants and cafes to continue to make al fresco dining a reality with outside seating, tables and street stalls to serve food and drinks.

After reviewing the guidance, consulting WDC we have produced the attached guide. Please email us on to receive a copy. 

This walks through the key steps, links, contacts and some helpful information to consider if you are thinking about applying for a pavement or highway trading licence and obtaining equipment.

Please note, if applying to trade on the highway we recommend you consult the highway authority (Warwickshire County Council (WCC) first. This will mean that any subsequent application to WDC (the licencing authority) will not be stopped in its tracks. We are happy to help and / or be cc’ed into any emails etc.

Key points in the attached presentation are: 

  • Placing seating on the pavement or highway requires a licence from Warwick District Council (WDC). 
  • In the case of highway applications (e.g. parking spaces, loading bays, vehicle lanes) we recommend you obtain pre-application advice from Warwickshire County Council (WCC) in advance of applying. Once you apply, WDC will formally consult WCC when assessing your application.
  • Applications cost £100. This is non-refundable (even if refused) and there is no appeal procedure, but WDC will do what they can to help you.  
  • Once submitted, the process takes 10 working days.
  • Within this, there is a 5 day public consultation period (which you must advertise on your business).
  • To have outdoor seating approved by April 12th, and accounting for public holidays, applications should be submitted by March 24th. 
  • You require a range of supporting plans and insurance documents.
  • BID Leamington is happy to support you where we can – please see within for details.

Key Links and Contacts are:


We appreciate this is a lot and it will not be viable for everyone, but we hope it helps. As contained within, this is a developing document, so please keep us updated with your experiences and we will update this information as required. There are also a number of parallel ongoing discussions about the use of certain green spaces and road closures, so we will keep relevant businesses updated.

As always, please drop us an email if you need support and we will do our best to help – and please keep us updated with your opening plans and preparations. 

Best wishes and stay safe,

Steph & Alison