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Street cafe licence

If you wish to create a street cafe within the highway you'll need to apply for a licence.


You should also read the street cafe guidance before applying.

Check the full list of charges for highway licences to find out how much the licence will cost.

If you need advice about a street cafe licence, please call 01642 728290.


To operate a street cafe, you are required to adhere to the following guidance:


The Holder(s) shall not assign, underlet or part with any interest or possession given by the Permission or any part thereof but the Holder(s) may surrender it at any time.

Cleansing of the area

The Holder(s) shall maintain the area shown on the plan attached to the Permission and edged in red, and the immediate adjacent area, in a clean and tidy condition during the Permitted hours and shall leave the same in a clean and tidy condition and unobstructed, which shall include i) washing down the area, and ii) removing any refuse and litter deposited on the highway in the vicinity of the tables and chairs. This will be carried out whenever necessary and in a way which does not create a nuisance to other parties and neighbouring premises.

Consumption of alcohol

No alcohol shall be consumed on the highway unless a licence has been issued by the Licensing Justices to the Holder(s) of the permit.

Danger / nuisance / annoyance / damage / inconvenience

Notwithstanding the specific requirements in condition 4 (above) the Holder(s) shall not do or suffer anything to be done in or on the highway which in the opinion of Middlesbrough Council may be or become a danger, nuisance or annoyance to or cause damage or inconvenience to the said council or to the owners or occupiers of any adjacent premises or to members of the public.

Direction in use of highway

The Holder(s) shall observe and comply with any directions in relation to the use of the highway given by relevant officers of Middlesbrough Council.

Defining the area

The area of the cafe shall be defined with planters, fencing or similar furniture to contain the tables and chairs to within the boundary and to assist people with visual impairment to recognise the boundary. Such furniture is to be of an agreed standard and may be themed to match the rest of the cafe furniture. It must be maintained in a clean and tidy condition and not placed so as to obstruct any entrance or exit to buildings.


The Permission requires a fee to be paid and in addition, there is an annual inspection fee payable. See the schedule of charges on this site for up to date fee rates. Additional rental may be charged where the council are the owners of the sub-soil beneath the highway. Fees will be reviewed from time to time by the council.

Food and drink

All food and drink should be served to tables and customers discouraged from purchasing food away from the tables or standing while consuming food or drink. Signage must be displayed to this effect.

Furniture removal

The Holder(s) shall remove all furniture or equipment, litter bins or other articles placed on the highway in accordance with the Permission at the expiry, surrender or revocation of the Permission and where required at the end of each working day.


The Holder(s) shall indemnify the council against all actions, proceedings, claims, demands and liability which may at any time be taken, made or incurred in consequence of the use of the chairs and tables and other objects and for this purpose must take out at the Holder(s) expense a policy of insurance approved by the council in the sum of at least £5,000,000 in respect of any one event and must produce to the council on request current receipts for premium payments and confirmation of annual renewals of the policy.

Losses and damages

The Holder(s) shall make no claim of charge against the council in the event of the chairs or tables or other objects being lost, stolen or damaged in any way from whatever cause.

Noise/nuisance control

The Holder(s) shall not use or allow to be used any music playing, music reproduction or sound amplification apparatus or any musical instruments, radio or television receiving sets whilst exercising privileges granted by the Permission unless otherwise agreed with the Council in writing.

Notices for the consumption of alcohol

The Holder(s) shall, whilst members of the public are using the facilities provided for the consumption of intoxicating liquor, provide in a prominent position, to the satisfaction of the council's representatives, Notices in the form approved concerning the provisions required by Middlesbrough Council relating to the consumption of intoxicating liquor in public places.

Obstruction/danger/nuisance on the highway

The Holder(s) shall not cause any obstruction of the highways or danger to persons using it, and shall not permit persons to gather so as to cause a nuisance or annoyance or danger to any persons lawfully using the highway.

Other licenses/permissions

The Holder(s) shall not take the issue of the Permit to exclude the requirement to obtain any other licences, planning permission or consents which may be required to accommodate all of the proposals.

Other tenancy/Permissions

Nothing contained within the Permission shall be construed as the granting of or purported granting by the Council of any tenancy under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 or any permission under the Town & Country Planning Act 1990 or any statutory modification or re-enactment thereof for the time being in force.


The Holder(s) of the Permission shall not exercise privileges granted by the Permission otherwise than strictly in accordance with the Permission.

Production of Permission on demand

The Holder(s) shall produce the Permission on demand when so required by a police officer or a duly authorised officer of Middlesbrough Council.

Rates, taxes and other outgoings

The Holder(s) shall be responsible for any rates, taxes and other outgoings which may be charged.

Requirements under the Highways Act 1980

In addition to the above conditions of permission your attention is drawn to the overriding requirements of Section 115k of the Highways Act 1980.

Revocation of the Permission

The Holder(s) shall return the Permission to the Office of the Head of Transport and Design Services immediately on revocation of the Permission.

Surface of the highway

The Holder(s) shall not make any excavations or indentations of any description whatsoever in the surface of the highway or place or fix any equipment of any description in the said surface, unless otherwise agreed with the council in writing.

Sole purpose of the Permission

The area so Permitted to be used must be used solely for the purpose of consuming refreshments and not for any other purpose whatsoever.

Temporary suspension of permission and/or revocation

The Holder(s) may from time to time be notified of temporary suspension of the permission granted to allow for maintenance, installation works or any other lawful activity to take place. In other cases where the use of the highway alters, the permit may be revoked by issue of a notice. Permission may also be revoked for non-compliance with the above conditions and Middlesbrough Council shall not in any circumstances whatsoever be liable to pay compensation to the Holder(s) in respect of such suspension or revocation.

Urgent removal of the street cafe

In certain circumstances the Holder(s) may be required to take immediate action to remove all facilities from the highway at the specific request of a Police Officer or designated Council Officer.