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Free pavement licenses for Crawley cafés, restaurants and bars

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Local cafés, restaurants and bars in Crawley can now apply for free pavement licences to provide outdoor seating, following a change in legislation in July 2020.

This is one of a series of measures afforded to Crawley Borough Council to help boost the recovery process for local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

No business can operate any trading or provide outdoor tables and chairs without an appropriate consent or pavement licence in place. To make a licence application, business owners are required to complete an online application form.

Businesses will also need to ensure any outdoor seating arrangements comply with social distancing measures and COVID-19 secure business practices.

Chair of Licensing Committee, Councillor Michael Jones, said:

“Like many others, our local hospitality industry has been hit hard by the pandemic. The next few months are going to be crucial for their recovery and the council is committed to supporting our local businesses as much as possible.

“This change in legislation means that we have been able to respond quickly to enable our borough’s cafes and restaurants to have tables and chairs outside their premises, to attract more customers and make it a safer environment during the pandemic.”

For more information, visit https://crawley.gov.uk/business/licensing/other-licences-and-consents/pavement-licence

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BREAKING NEWS: Sainsbury’s to close Crawley town centre store

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It has been an historic part of the town centre for decades, but now the supermarket on Queensway is to close its doors with the potential loss of jobs.

Image: Google Street View

Sainsbury’s says it has made the difficult decision after announcing it would close up to 15 supermarkets a year ago, pre-covid.

Sources close to the Crawley supermarket say that staff began finding out the news yesterday.

The supermarket said they would work with their staff at the site to try to find alternative roles within the firm.

A Sainsbury’s spokesperson speaking to Crawley News 24 said,

“We have updated colleagues on the difficult decision to close our Crawley store and we are doing everything we can to find alternative roles within Sainsbury’s for those affected.

“Customers can continue to shop with us online and at our nearby stores. For example, our West Green store is a short drive away.”

Whilst a date for the closure has not been announced, some sources say it could be as soon as January ’21.

Cllr Peter Smith Cabinet member for Planning and Economic said:

“I am sorry for the staff that will lose their jobs at this difficult time when most supermarkets are reporting improving profits.

We have had enquiries from other supermarkets looking for suitable sites who may recognise that there will shortly be an additional 2500 residential homes just a short walk away from this prestigious location. We will be doing all we can to help find a quality occupier as soon as we can.”

Crawley Councillor Francis Guidera said:

“It is tremendously saddening to read that one of the original major shops in the town centre is closing. A lot of housing provision is currently being created in the town centre area and there is an increasing, not decreasing need for food retailers in the town centre.

We haven’t even begun to knock down the administrative offices of the town hall which will be replaced by a huge apartment block, and they are still building the first apartment block on the former council car park as I type this! I genuinely hope that another food retailer grabs the huge opportunity to take on that store.”

The news comes just one after one of the most iconic town centre independent store, P&J Sweets also announced they were to close.

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