Skip to main content

Covid-19 regulations for licensed premises

Following the move to Step 2 of the government's road map out of lockdown, more licensed premises and hospitality venues can open.

Updated rules

From 12 April 2021

More licensed premises will be permitted to open. Unless a specific exemption exists, these must only be attended/used in line with the wider social contact limits at this stage - as a single household or bubble indoors; or in a group of 6 people or 2 households outdoors.

From 17 May 2021

From 17 May 2021 hospitality venues can serve both indoors (within the rule of 6 or two households) and outdoors (maximum of 30 people). There is no need for customers to order a substantial meal with alcohol, and no curfew - although customers must order, eat and drink while seated.

At any premises serving alcohol, customers will be required to order, be served and eat/drink while seated (table service).

If you want to place tables and chairs outside your premises, you will need to have the correct permissions such as a Pavement Licence or Highway Tables and Chairs consent, and that your premises licence has the correct authorisations.

Hospitality venues will also be allowed to provide takeaway alcohol. Takeaway food and drink (including alcohol) must not be consumed on the premises or adjacent to the premises.

These venues may allow customers to use toilets located inside.

There is no 10pm curfew, however you must operate within the terms of your premises licence, and there is no requirement for alcohol to be served with substantial food.

When a group (more than 1 person) enters a hospitality venue, every individual must check in either by scanning the official NHS QR code poster with the NHS COVID-19 app, or by providing their contact details.

Some venues may wish to erect outdoor shelters. To be considered ‘outdoors’, shelters, marquees and other structures can have a roof but need to have at least 50% of the area of their walls open at all times whilst in use. If in doubt please contact the planning team on planning@bedford.gov.uk

Further guidance

Keep up to date with any changes by reading the guidance for the hospitality industry on working safely and on reopening of businesses and venues on the gov.uk website.

We also recommend you check the government's business support information page which provides information about financial support available to businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.

We understand that this is a very stressful and anxious time for everyone in the hospitality industry and we recognise that all businesses have had an incredibly challenging year. We would like to take this opportunity to thank you once again for your continued co-operation and patience through this difficult period.