Distance restaurants can extend onto pavement?

_Bee_Bee Stroud Green Road
I tried to find this out online but couldn't figure it out. Does anyone know the max distance allowed for restaurants to extend onto the pavement for outdoor seating?


  • grennersgrenners Ferme Park Road, N4
    I don't think a business has a right to do that. It obviously depends on whether the local authority allows it. They usually charge a fee for the licence and it requires planning permission. It obviously depends on the width of pavement and location. Sometimes there is a stretch of what looks like pavement adjacent to the facade of the building but is in fact private land and not public highway and that is less of a problem for an operator. Check your title deeds for a plan. The issue is enforcement as when a council grants a licence there will be an area marked on a plan in the document but there may not be an obligation to mark it on the ground. On a nice day it's a bit too tempting for an operator to extend a little and add a few tables thereby blocking people's routes.
  • edited July 2017

    The restaurants on the Islington side of upper SGR (where the width of the pavement is wide enough to accommodate) had to apply for a permit about a year ago. There were planning notices hung in the windows of each restaurant for about a month. From memory, they were permitted to apply for 2.4m of pavement.

  • A few businesses on the Islington side of SGR seem to think they have a right to incommode passersby with their street junk. A friend said she had good results writing to Islington Council about the carwash on SGR just up from the station. They were washing the cars while the cars were straddling the pavement, forcing pedestrians to walk into the cycle lane. She also complained about the Worlds End pub putting an A-board out on the corner of the pavement, causing a distraction/obstruction to people crossing there; the council told her the pub had no license for an A-board at all, and that they'd talk to the landlord.

    When you get about as far up as Nuchem on SGR you have outdoor chairs and tables, and even A-boards on either side of the pavement, sometimes leaving barely enough space for two people to pass each other. I keep wanting to write to Islington myself about that (although, being on the Haringey side, I don't know if they'd care), but I keep forgetting to make a note of the businesses who put all those things out (I don't think Nuchem is one of them!)
  • You can see one of the planning noticed on one or the street post just out side Yik Yak for tables outside the restaurant
    I think if it is reasonable it makes the area more lively
  • Coincidentally (or perhaps not) before seeing _Bee’s post this evening I walked past Pizzeria Pappagone and thought ‘that outside eating area is a foot wider than it used to be’. I’m sure it’s grown and I do wonder if it's within the licensing regulations.

    Restaurants do pay for a licence to put tables on the pavement and I’d imagine the depth must be specified when the licence is granted - no?

    There is also an Asian/Caribbean shop near Cats which also takes up a good half the pavement and that should definitely be the subject of an enforcement order.

    Having said that I agree with Ali that restaurant tables outside are a good thing. Within an agreed limit.
  • edited December 2017
  • _Bee_Bee Stroud Green Road
    I think it is a nice thing, for sure, but I'm happy to see what krappy wrote - I have to squeeze past Pappagones every day. I wouldn't mind that the seating is slowly creeping out further and further, but for some reason the patrons also like to stand and chat in groups outside of the eating area, leaving no space for passers by.
    So... I guess I want to take back some pavement. Is there somewhere official to make a complaint?
  • I like the restaurants and cafes spilling out onto the street, I think when the weather's good it adds character and a good vibe. I can deal with having to squeeze by at Pappagone or another place in order to have that, but people hanging around outside need to be considerate and let others past - that's the thing that often falls down.

    Not so keen on random shop stuff encroaching across the pavement. There's no real need for that.

    As for an A board, surely that doesn't need council involvement, just put it somewhere sensible and if someone wants it moved, ask the owner nicely.
  • I am on a mobility scooter, it is an absolute nightmare, I have almost been reduced to tears trying to get past a few on that stretch of SGR, once having to get off my scooter and move a metal fencing post as could not pass between it and a lampost with bike chained to it ( none of the staff bothering to help). I have also caught my wheel on the posts twice due to lack of space (large metal disc bases, giving even less space at ground level). So unecessary, enough room for seating on that stretch with a bit of consideration.

    It to the point I avoid SGR at weekends when busy shopping elswhere.

    Apart from those few inconsiderates, I like the seating outside places and life it brings.
  • Can't say I have noticed people having to squeeze past anywhere at the top end of the Street. Squeezing definitely happen further down the street say outside D@D. I wouldn't want the street to go back to the 1980s. Only restaurant at the top end was the Veggie Indian. The rest of it was quite bleak and dodgy after dark
    We are very lucky with the variety and choice we have.
  • edited July 2017
    You aren't entitled to have an A board out without a licence and when you do have one it is supposed to be within what is generally assumed to be your area of pavement - about as far as pavement skylights usually come out.

    Don't worry, it will soon be raining and miserable again, the tables will disappear for nine months and we can have the empty, grey pavement back. No one likes walking past people enjoying themselves.

  • I like A boards - in moderation like most things.

    Toddlesocks, you have my sympathy. My kids until recently were small enough to be in a buggy and you've just reminded me that it used to be a right pain getting past some places with that. It will be worse for you.

    I reckon the issue isn't just the seating but it being combined with what feels like an increasing number of pedestrians who appear to be self-absorbed and pretty inconsiderate (although I may just be getting grumpier).

    The sheer number of people who will barge through against an old person / someone with a mobility scooter / someone with a buggy or kids etc rather than let them pass first amazes me.

    I guess lots of people are very important and have very important places to get to and that outweighs old-fashioned courtesy.

    (And yes, I know that often those people who are old / unstable/ buggy or kid-laden can be inconsiderate too, but it's more often the other way round).
  • I was walking through Kings Cross yesterday changing tubes and a woman walked straight at me full on supermodel, face like thunder with the arm going and all.

    I did wonder what would of happened if I hadn't of moved out of her way but as you say she must have been very important (and i am but a serf) so I doffed my cap and let her storm past.

    I like people being on pavements, i think the metal fences are the actual problem.
  • My chap is 6ft 5 and hefty. Hilarity ensues when someone tries to barge right into him expecting him to move. He is mild mannered but not very tolerant of bad pavement etiquette.
  • edited July 2017
    What is the correct response to someone walking straight at you on a collision course with eyes glued to smartphone?
  • I resorted to putting a cowbell on my mobility scooter, and shout a friendly excuse me if that fails. Though guess us all walking around wearing bells may get confusing.

    On a positive note spaces outside for refreshments makes them more accessible for disabled ect, wish more had awnings for all weather use.
  • There's a couple of brilliant scooter drivers about, one has two dogs and one has blaring music, always cheers me up.
  • 'What is the correct response to someone walking straight at you on a collision course with eyes glued to smartphone?'

    Duck head and charge, rhino-style?

    More seriously, I'm surprised more people aren't seriously hurt from this modern day menace.

    I cycle across London to work and back every day and the number of idiots who step off pavements to cross the sideroads that cut across main roads, while looking at their phone and not for any traffic coming, is astonishing. Do it in front of a lorry and you're going to have real problems.

    Yet, when you come to an emergency halt and stop for them, they invariably look up and glare at you.

  • Is a bell necessary on a bicycle?
  • I don't dong all the time with phone Ja Walkers could be deadly on a super cycle highway
  • grennersgrenners Ferme Park Road, N4
    @Papa L I have fitted an old school bell to my road bike for this very purpose. Anyone near the edge of a pavement needs to be given a very wide berth. I have thought about an aerosol powered fog horn. I have hit two people in my cycling career. On one occasion an elderly lady stepped out from behind a tree at the very moment I passed it. I was cycling in the bit that was painted in green indicating cyclists should cycle on it. Safe to say I now cycle down in the middle of the road if I can along that route. Regardless of whether people have a phone or not one needs to be constantly on the look out for these lemmings.
  • I cycle also and have had far more near-misses from idiot pedestrians than from drivers.
  • Shirley you can't be serious with that joke? Krappy
  • Stop calling me Shirley!
  • Frankly, these jokes leave much to be desired.
  • I have a hooter, I have been persuaded out of an airhorn but may look into getting a vuvuzela.
  • edited July 2017
    Where can I get an air horn? I need one when I go walking in the mountains next week, to scare away the herds of wild boars.
  • Its blowing a Gail, i was thinking on an al fresco lunch....will get my coat.
  • A bit of street archeology the cobbles beside the road on the pavement outside the White Lion used to be where the WLM had its tables in the olden days last century. Used to be a load of picnic tables. The Italian does need to move about a foot back towards the restaurant as they are taking to much pavement
    Not helped by the parking ticket machine
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