This is the submission Councillor Paul Woodhead made regarding the consultation published by Cannock Chase District Council in respect to the draft Pavement Café Licence and Commercial Obstructions Policy Consultation. The consultation period ran between 13 February 2017 and 26 March 2017 and is now closed.
I have shared my concerns verbally with officers at Cannock Chase District Council regarding the imposition of this policy on the town of Hednesford in particular in respect to A boards and would ask that we develop guidance for adherence by traders rather than a chargeable permitting regime. There are a couple of the national chains now creeping out beyond their immediate area (Subway and PureGym are the ones I have noted recently) by chaining A boards to street furniture and this should be prevented whilst supporting traders being able to attract potential customers by advertising their wares and services outside their immediate location. Certain expectations around size, location, quantity, insurance, materials quality, passing distance or intrusion to the walkways.
It is difficult to comment on cost without proposals but consideration should be given to what we are trying to achieve. I believe that with a well defined and developed policy guidance there should not be a need for licensing of A Boards.
Consideration should be given to how this will be enforced with limited and reducing budgets there is little point developing a guidance system or licensing scheme if we cannot adequately resource the enforcement. I would like to see detailed proposals regarding enforcement if the decision is made to develop policy guidance or a licencing regime. We do not police fly-posting, litter, dog-mess etc. adequately at present. A further regulatory infrastructure without the resources to implement is both pointless and does not enhance the reputation of the council in the delivery of services.
Similar comments follow for street furniture for cafes although I accept this may have particular challenges in extended pedestrian areas like Cannock and Rugeley