Coronavirus COVID-19 – Update

Latest updates regarding the Licensing service.

Pavement licences

Temporary changes to planning and licensing procedures have recently become law. Pavement licences offer a fast-track process to make it easier for premises serving food and drink to seat and serve customers as lockdown restrictions are lifted but social distancing guidelines remain in place.

If you wish to utilise the pavement for trading you will need to complete and submit a pavement licence application form (pdf, 1.4 MB). Please download and complete the form, then save and send via email to licensing@merton.gov.uk.

This is no charge for this licence in Richmond but an application must be submitted. Incomplete applications may be rejected.  By submitting the application you are agreeing to the standard conditions for pavement licenses (pdf, 48 KB).

The application process requires a seven-day public consultation which begins on the day after an application is submitted (completed form and payment received). There is a legal requirement to place a clear public notice in an area easily visible to passers-by. You may use this template (pdf, 950 KB) to assist you.

Granted licences will be valid until 30 September 2021.

Pavement licence applications received

The applications received for pavement licences lists those which are still open to comment or objection by the public. The list gives the last date for objections to be made.

For any further queries, please get in touch with our licensing team at licensing@merton.gov.uk and we will respond as soon as we can.

For traders with existing street trading licences for forecourts, catering vans and market stalls, please be aware you will continue to be licensed as a street trader and you should renew your licence as normal.

Further information

Takeaway services

In March 2020, amendments were made to The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) (Amendment) Order 2020 to allow businesses that are currently and lawfully operating as restaurants, cafes or drinking establishments to temporarily provide takeaway food services, until 23 March 2021.

However, any business that intends to make use of these temporary takeaway permitted development rights must comply with the following conditions:

Notify the Local Planning Authority of the building / land that you intend to use for the provision of takeaway food until 23 March 2021 – please send details to planning@richmond.gov.uk

Any temporary takeaway food use will cease on 23 March 2021 and the building and land will revert to its previous lawful use.

Temporary uses

In June 2020, amendments were made to The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) (Amendment) Order 2015 to increase the period that temporary uses can operate without the need for express planning consent.

Class B, Part 4, Schedule 2 of the above Order already allows for the use of any land for any purpose for up to 28 days in total in any calendar year (and 14 days for markets) and the provision of any moveable structure associated to that permitted use. This is subject to the site not being with the curtilage of a building. 

In June 2020, Class BA was introduced to the Order, which allows for the use of any land, in addition to that permitted by Class B, Part 4 of Schedule 2, for any purposes for not more than 28 days in total during the 1st July 2020 to 31st December 2020 (and 14 days for markets) and the provision of any moveable structures for the purpose of the permitted use.  This is subject to the site not being within the curtilage of a listed building.

Therefore, between 1 July 2020 and 1 July 2021:

  • Land that is not within the curtilage of a building can operate a temporary use for 56 days
  • Land that is within the curtilage of a non-listed building can operate a temporary use for 28 days.
  • Land within a curtilage of a listed building has no temporary use rights

Important information

1. The above permitted development rights do not override the need to:

(a) Gain landowner’s approval

(b) Have insurance and liability for any temporary use

(c) Maintain public rights of way and access

(d) Be COVID-19 Secure

(e) Gain the necessary license

2. The Council also requests that

(a) You keep a record of the days that the land is in temporary use and have this available upon request should officers need to enquire about the period of use

(b) The hours of operation are mindful and respectful towards neighbours

(c) The space is well managed

(d) The land is kept free from litter and clean

There are appropriate arrangements in place for the safe disposal of waste.

Whilst not a statutory requirement, you are able to apply for a Lawful Development Certificate for a Proposed use, and submit to the Local Planning Authority for confirmation.

Updated: 30 July 2020