The Government’s ‘gazebo offensive’ has been hailed as a ‘shot in the arm’ for pubs (Picture: Getty)
Thousands more pubs can welcome punters from next month after ministers scrapped planning permission for gazebos and marquees.
Town halls have been told to remove red tape for restaurants and bars reopening their doors to the public when lockdown restrictions are due to be eased on April 12.
Landlords and business owners were given the news by communities secretary Robert Jenrick, who described the move as a ‘shot in the arm for our wonderful pubs’, The Sun reports.
The so-called ‘gazebo offensive’ means watering holes and eateries can erect a marquee or gazebo without planning permission until September.
Venues with access to pavements must notify their local town hall – but can carry on serving if they are not contacted within 10 days, in a bid to ease reopening, according to The Mirror.
Mr Jenrick said: ‘We have cut needless red tape to make it easier for pubs and restaurants to set up marquees, making the most of outdoor space and giving more people the chance to enjoy a meal or pint.
‘Every pub in the land can now erect a marquee in their garden for the whole summer; a shot in the arm for our wonderful pubs.’
Pubs without gardens have been given a lifeline by the Government (Picture: Getty)
The temporary measure will enable up to 9,000 extra venues to offer al fresco drinking and dining (Picture: AFP via Getty Images)
Mr Jenrick also thanked business owners and communities, describing how he was ‘hugely grateful for their strength and spirit’ during the pandemic.
The rule change comes as ministers unveil a £56million ‘Welcome Back’ fund ahead of lockdown rules relaxing.
Councils can apply for money to host beer and food festivals to entice people to the high street.
And local authority leaders are also set to receive cash revive floral displays, remove graffiti and revamp parks.
Caps on private parking fines will also be introduced to clamp down on ‘cowboy parking firms’ and give drivers confidence when visiting towns.
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said the Government has ‘cut needless red tape’ to help struggling businesses (Picture: AFP via Getty Images)
Funds will be specifically assigned to coastal areas, with all English seaside resorts set to receive a financial boost.
The ‘gazebo offensive’ has been welcomed by industry bosses.
CEO of the British Beer and Pub Association, Emma McClarkin, said: It’s good news for pubs, as we move towards the outdoor reopening, that rules around outdoor spaces will be more relaxed, particularly given the vagaries of the April weather.
‘We would urge the Government and local councils to work with publicans to ensure as many people as possible are able to return to the Great British pub.’
Campaign for Real Ale chairman, Nik Antona – who previously warned 20 per cent of pubs could fold if they are not given adequate support – added: ‘The news that pubs will be able to put up marquees without planning permission is great.’
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