Helping the hospitality industry through the pandemic

Extending Pavement licences allows cafes, bars and restaurants to respond to the latest rules and public demands. With ASSURE, authorities have everything needed to streamline the applications. 

The changes to Pavement licences 

Last year, The Business and Planning Act 2020 made three changes to help the hospitality industry through the pandemic. 

Firstly, there was the change to the new Pavement licences to allow businesses to serve and cater to customers on the pavement outside their premises. Previously, businesses would have to apply through their local authority for a ‘Table and Chair’ licence. However this could take up to 28 days to process. Licensees now hear about the success of their Pavement licence in just 5 days. And if they don’t, they can assume their authority has granted it. This means local authorities have a faster and easier process to award the licences and businesses can respond rapidly to demand while still following regulations. 

Secondly, it brought about the extension of ‘off sales’ (essentially any alcohol that can be consumed ‘off premise’) till 11pm. The takeaway pints and cocktails we’ve enjoyed in the last year all require a licence, and this is how they’re awarded. There are a few requirements businesses must comply with but otherwise it’s simple. And it means businesses can stay open and employing staff, even if customers aren’t allowed inside. 

Finally the act extended the number of temporary event notices (known as TENS) allowed in each calendar year. Now authorities can allow up to 20 events, covering 26 days in total. This means more events can happen in public areas, and what’s more, the application process is easy too. 

The Business and Planning Act was due to lapse in September of this year, but the government has extended it for a further year till 30 September 2022. And all three changes will continue into 2022 in the hope of helping more businesses recover from the pandemic.

 

How ASSURE makes life easier for licensing departments

This is great news for local businesses, and it’s important that authorities know they have the support to implement these changes. That’s where ASSURE comes in. We already work with some of the London boroughs who have been using the Tables and Chairs licence for outdoor spaces for years. Like the rest of the country, they can now offer the easier and simplified Pavement licence. And they can do it with confidence that ASSURE already supports these processes. 

The difference it makes is quite simple. In reference to the Temporary Event Notice extension, ASSURE allows the authority to control the parameters around applications. This means you can amend limits like number of events and total duration. The intuitive system will then automatically process applications depending on these limitations.

It also allows the authority the ability to configure a new type of licence. Take Pavement licences for instance. Any ASSURE Licensing customer can set up a new online application for licensees with ease. The 5 day turnaround can be set as a ‘target date’ for completion which ensures all users know the deadline and they can even build it into Automated Actions to streamline their steps. Remember, our consultancy team is always on hand to offer advice and guidance in this area. If you have any questions, just drop us an email here. 

 

Next steps…

The act has been extended, and ASSURE can help you streamline these improved processes. So why wait? Existing customers can message their account manager about using ASSURE Licensing. Or if you’re new to ASSURE, drop us an email to let us know you’d like to learn more about the software and we’ll be in touch. 

Learn more about ASSURE Licensing.