Pavement licences

The Business and Planning Act 2020 introduced a new, temporary, fast-track process for businesses to obtain a pavement licence for the placement of furniture, such as tables and chairs, on the highway (including footpaths and pavements) next to their premises.

You can only use this permission for the purpose of selling or consuming food and drink in connection with the activity of the main premises. 

This law has now been amended to allow us to issue licences for up to two years at a time, and to give us more powers to take action if there are issues, or if operators are carrying out the activity without a licence.  

Prior to applying

These licences can only be issued if the land is considered to be part of the 'Highway'. If the land is privately owned then we cannot issue a pavement licence and you need to discuss your plans with the owner of the land. The licensing team is not responsible for identifying land owners.

You must follow the conditions set out below. If it is clear on application that you are unable to do so, then we will refuse the licence.

We issue licences on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no specific restriction on what part of the highway can be licensed, as long as it is next to the existing business. We recommend discussing your plans with nearby similar businesses to ensure fair use of the space.

You must ensure there is enough space for wheelchairs, prams, and pushchairs to pass safely. Ideally, this space should be at least two metres. We will consider individual circumstances, such as the presence of bollards or lamp-posts, and some exceptions may be made according to statutory guidance.

Once an application is submitted for consultation the fee is non-refundable, so it is important that applicants check carefully before submitting an application.

Hemel Hempstead Town Centre (Marlowes)

Some areas of Hemel Hempstead town centre are managed by Saunders Markets Ltd - the areas it is responsible for are shown in the plan below. If you would like to use the areas designated for market traders when they are available, no pavement licence is required from us, but agreement is required from the Market Manager and a fee is payable to them. Contact Saunders Markets for more information:

Email: or
Telephone: 07824 275771 or 01483 277640

 Hemel Hempstead Market plan (PDF 547KB)

If you wish to use areas of Marlowes not managed by the market, or in addition to, a pavement licence from us is required. It is important that any area applied for takes into account the other activities within Marlowes, including the market stalls.


In accordance with section 5 of the Business and Planning Act 2020, we have published a list of standard conditions that will be attached to all pavement licences, both granted and ‘deemed granted’ (see below). Failure to comply with the conditions could lead to revocation of the licence, so it is important that you read this information before you apply and understand the requirements that you will need to comply with as a licence holder.

National conditions

Anything done by the licence-holder pursuant to this licence, or any activity of other persons which is enabled by the licence, must not have the effect of:

1. Preventing traffic, other than vehicular traffic, from:

  • entering the relevant highway at a place where such traffic could otherwise enter it (ignoring any pedestrian planning order or traffic order made in relation to the highway),
  • passing along the relevant highway, or
  • having normal access to premises adjoining the relevant highway.

2. Preventing any use of vehicles, which is permitted by a pedestrian planning order or which is not prohibited by a traffic order.

3. Preventing statutory undertakers having access to any apparatus of theirs under, in, on or over the highway, or

4. Preventing the operator of an electronic communications code network having access to any electronic communications apparatus kept installed for the purposes of that network under, in, on or over the highway.

5. Where the furniture to be put on the relevant highway consists of seating for use by persons for the purpose of consuming food or drink, the licence holder must make reasonable provision for seating where smoking is not permitted.

Standard local conditions

  • Only objects listed in the licence are permitted to be placed on the highway.
  • The authorised objects and structures shall only be permitted between the hours stated on the licence. Outside of those hours, the objects and structures shall be removed and placed on or within your business premise.
  • You must regularly clear the area of any potential litter, and leave the pavement in a neat and tidy condition at the end of each day.
  • Unless agreed in advance by a Licence and Enforcement Officer, any conditions placed upon the licence must be complied with at all times. Failure to do so could be considered a breach and may result in the revocation or suspension of the licence.
  • You must not cause any unnecessary obstruction of the pavement/highway or danger to people using the pavement/highway.
  • You must not allow people to gather and cause a nuisance or annoyance or danger to any person lawfully using the pavement/highway.
  • You must not play music amplified or unamplified or any musical instruments, radio or television whilst your licence is in operation.
  • You must not allow any excavations or indentations of any description in the surface of the highway or place or fix equipment of any description to the surface of the highway.
  • You must not allow the use of the highway for any other purpose at any time other than during the hours permitted by your licence.
  • You must not place any furniture or equipment or advertisement on the highway that is not specified in your licence. You must not obstruct the access and exits to your premises.
  • You must remove all furniture, litter bins and other equipment placed on the highway at the expiry, surrender or revocation of the licence.
  • You must remove the permitted obstructions from the highway if instructed to do so by us or the Highway Authority.
  • During an emergency you must remove the permitted structures from the highway, if instructed to do so by a:

    1. Police Officer
    2. Fire Officer
    3. Paramedic
    4. Undertaker
    5. Utility Companies
    6. Any other authorised persons

  • You must display the licence at the premises so it can be clearly seen from the highway.
  • You must comply with any reasonable requests in relation to the use of the highway by officers on behalf of Dacorum Borough Council.
  • You must provide suitable barriers around the permitted area where required by us.
  • You must indemnify Dacorum Borough Council against all actions, proceedings, claims demands and liability which may be taken, made or incurred in the consequences of the use of the chairs and tables and other objects and for this purpose must take out at your expense a policy of insurance approved by us in the sum of at least £5,000,0000 (five million pounds) in respect of any one event and must produce to us on request the current receipts for premium payments.
  • You must not charge for the use of the chairs and table and other furniture.
  • No heaters of any kind are to be placed on or over the highway.
  • You must not obstruct access to any fire hydrant or defibrillator in the area.
  • You must not obstruct, obscure or hinder access from any emergency escape route
  • The maximum number of tables permitted by the street pavement licence is shown on the front of the licence.

How to apply 

Applications must be submitted with the correct fee. To apply for a licence, you will need to complete the online application form below and submit it along with supporting documents.

Apply now

On the same day you apply, you must post a notice of your application at your premises. This notice should be easily visible and readable to the public. It must stay up for the entire public consultation period, which is 14 days starting the day after your application is submitted. You must use our template for this notice.

Every application goes through a 14-day public consultation period, beginning the day after you apply. We then have another 14 days to decide on your application. If we don’t decide within this time, the licence is deemed granted. There is no right of appeal if your application is refused.

Current applications

When businesses apply for pavement licences the application will appear here whilst they are under consultation.

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Page Last Updated: Friday, 24 May 2024 at 09:14 AM