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Street cafe licence

Coronavirus (COVID-19): latest information about licences and registration.

​​​​​​Licence summary

A licence is required to use a portion of a public street, road or place for the sale of food and drink and for the placing of tables, chairs or other temporary furniture outside a restaurant or cafe for patrons to use whilst consuming food and drink.

If you wish to gain a licence for the above you will need to gain consent by completing and submitting the application form available to download. Please note that conditions may apply to the conse​nt.

Be aware that approval is not automatic and no tables or chairs should be placed on the highway until formal approval has been obtained

Eligibility criteria

That application for a licence is deemed to be acceptance of the conditions by the applicant.  Failure to comply with these conditions will result in the licence being withdrawn.

Regulation summary

The licence applies to a designated area of the highway outside which there must be no furniture of any type. The licensee will be responsible for keeping the licensed area clean and tidy. The furniture used in these areas must be approved by the Local Authority so a consistent standard is maintained.

Application evaluation process

Applications for a licence are to be submitted to the Traffic Management section with the appropriate documents. These include certificate or cover note of public liability insurance, payment of the fee, layout of the proposed area including details of furniture and boundary treatment.

If the licence is to cover use for more than 28 days in one year then planning permission will be required which the licensee will be required to obtain prior to the licence application process.

Will tacit consent apply?

No. It is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from the local authority within a reasonable period, please contact it. You can do this online if you applied through the UK Welcomes service or use the contact details below.​

Apply for a licence

Failed application redress

Please contact us in the first instance. An appointed arbitrator will determine if consent has been unreasonably withheld.


0300 303 8879

Phone: Monday-Friday 8.30am-5.30pm.
Closed for training Monday 11am-11.30am.

Highways and Engineering Service
Number One Riverside
Smith Street
Rochdale OL16 1XU