THE future of temporary trading licences on a popular seaside strip are set to be decided on.
Vale of Glamorgan Council will meet this week to decide whether temporary trading licences, which allow hospitality businesses to trade on highways, granted to businesses on The Esplanade in Penarth can continue.
The licences were brought in to support businesses struggling during the Covid-19 pandemic.
A report being put to the council’s cabinet on Thursday, June 23, includes plans for public consultation and engagement on the future of The Esplanade and its external licensed areas.
Should proposals be approved on Thursday, these licences would be extended on a month-by-month basis while views on the management of the esplanade are sought.
Vale of Glamorgan Council Cabinet Member for Neighbourhood and Building Services, Cllr Mark Wilson, said: “There has been significant improvement in the public realm in and around the esplanade, with the council investing heavily in the Pier Pavilion.
“We have also carried out a widescale painting programme of the pier and esplanade alongside improvements to pavements and the road surface.
“There is significant public interest in this issue and differing opinions on whether external dining and licensed areas are a positive or negative feature at this location.
“If proposals are approved, the council will launch a comprehensive public engagement exercise to establish the views of all interested parties regarding future trading arrangements.
“Those opinions would then be compiled and properly analysed before a decision on the best way forward is taken.”
Most temporary trading licences in the Vale have been granted for space on pavements, while they were also issued for a trial of parklets, customer areas within parking bays, at certain locations in Penarth.
A petition, which gained over 2,000 signatures in March urged the council to save outdoor seating.
One Penarth resident, Jemma Angove, said: “I am very pleased the council have decided to relook at the outdoor seating as I believe this is a great asset to the esplanade.
“I hope the council continue to involve the community in the decision-making process and that there is a proper consultation that considers the views of all affected.”
The temporary trading licences in existence at the esplanade had been due to expire at the end of the month as had similar arrangements for businesses at Barry Island.