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Apply for a licence to put tables and chairs on the pavement or road

A pavement licence is a temporary licence which you to place tables and chairs outside your cafe, bar or restaurant (on roads and pavements).

This is a temporary measure to help businesses operate safely while social distancing measures are in place. See Draft guidance: pavement licences (outdoor seating proposal) for more information.

How we assess applications

We must ensure public safety (social distancing, access for people with disabilities, footpath maintenance and potential impact on anti-social behaviour in the surrounding area), and therefore we check each application for:

  • available footpath space, after placing tables and chairs on the area outside for people to pass by safely
  • impact on other businesses or our ability to clean and maintain the area
  • risks in relation to antisocial behaviour

We will assess every application individually and we are not able to guarantee that every licence will be granted.

If you are thinking of applying for a licence, watch a video about tables and chairs licensing by Sunderland Council to find out what you need to consider: 

How to apply

Please make sure you have read our Icon for pdf Pavement licence conditions (PDF, 130.3kb) before you apply.

Request for pavement licence for outdoor seating. You will need a photo of the area to complete your application. 

What happens next

Once we receive your application, we'll check with the relevant services across the council and partners (for example emergency services) to determine whether we can approve your application.

We will confirm whether your application has been approved, and advise where necessary within 10 working days (from the day you submit your application).

Contact us
Strategic Highways
03000 26 0000
Our address is:
  • Durham County Council
  • Meadowfield Depot
  • St John’s Road
  • Meadowfield
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH7 8XQ