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Street cafe (sitting out) licence

You need a licence to place tables and chairs on the highway.

Dorset County Council issue licences for most of the county, with the exception of Weymouth and Portland and The Square in Wimborne

You might need planning permission for things like planters, bollards, decking, canopies, lighting or heating.

Dorset County Council

New licences cost £296 and licence renewals cost £177.50.

Payment can be made by card over the phone. Contact us on 01305 228622 to discuss payment.

The sitting out area doesn't need to be directly outside of the premises but we would need to consult neighbouring properties and consider any objections before granting a licence.

Apply for a licence

Complete the sitting out licence application form.

Conditions of consent

The following conditions apply to a sitting out licence:

  • the location and size of the sitting out area will be agreed with the council. Normally a minimum footway width of 1.8m will be required at all times between the seating area and the edge of the  footway
  • a copy of the licence must be displayed in a prominent window fronting the sitting out area at all times
  • no "A" boards (advertising boards) or signs will be permitted in addition to the licensed area
  • advertising on umbrellas or blinds will be subject to Planning considerations and should be associated with the premises rather than individual products
  • the design of any permanently fixed items of furniture, (decking, lighting, bollards etc.) must be agreed prior to installation. Accessibility for disabled must be allowed for. The Licensee will be responsible for the costs of the provision and installation of these items together with their maintenance and removal
  • the operator of the licensed area must have adequate insurance to cover the area of the licence and indemnify the council from any claims arising from his activities
  • the council as Agents for the Highway Authority, and Statutory Undertakers will have a right of access to the area at all times
  • the council, subject to a one-month notice period may withdraw the licence. If the licence is  withdrawn no refunds will be paid
  • this Licence does not cover the consumption of alcohol on the Highway and the Licensee should  make an application to the appropriate Licensing body
  • the Licensee is responsible for keeping the licensed area clear of all litter and debris
  • the Licensee is responsible for obtaining any permissions relating to Planning and Community charge issues and any other licences or permissions

Weymouth and Portland

Before you apply you should read the Weymouth and Portland sitting out licence policy which explains the procedure and consultation process.

Charges are calculated according to the area of the intended sitting out area. No trading can take place within a sitting out area.

Apply for a licence

Complete the sitting out licence application form.

Renew a licence

Renewals must be completed before 1 August each year.

Complete the sitting out licence renewal application form.

Licence variation

There is an £84 charge to vary a licence. Any variation must be inline with the Traffic Regulation Orders.

Complete the sitting out licence variation application form

Transfer a licence

There is an £84 charge to transfer a licence. You must have the correct insurance before any seating is provided for the public.

Complete the sitting out licence transfer application form.

The Square, Wimborne

Contact us if you would like to place cafe furniture in The Square, Wimborne.

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