UKHospitality has called for the Scottish government to relax planning restrictions on outdoor seating indefinitely ahead of it being reviewed in the coming weeks.
As a response to the pandemic, the Scottish government’s chief planner John McNairney encouraged local authorities to relax planning restrictions on pavement and outdoor seating to allow pubs, restaurants can cafes to have more seating in the open air.
UKHospitality Scotland said outdoor seating culture must be here to stay, as similar planning laws in England are set to be streamlined, cutting red tape for businesses, as part of a plan to support high street recovery.
Said UKHospitality Scotland executive director Leon Thompson, “Many businesses have invested in outdoor seating and the imaginative approaches demonstrated by businesses should be encouraged and supported, with planning relaxed or streamlined indefinitely. Outdoor areas also provide additional capacity for businesses that need to be given increased opportunities to trade as profitably as possible.
“Relaxation of the planning restrictions showed real pragmatism and responsiveness from the Scottish government and was applauded by businesses at the time. Let’s keep supporting our hospitality businesses as they seek to recover from 16 months of closure and restricted opening.”