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Guidance for applying for Inner Zone street trading consent

Consents have terms which specify the permitted street trading days, times, articles to be sold and the permitted size/ type and appearance of vehicle/ unit.

These terms have been devised to ensure that street trading is coordinated and well managed in line with the broad range of events and activities taking place daily in the City Centre. The terms also ensure that each permitted stall is of an appropriate quality, clean, attractive and well maintained; that they add to the City Centre offer and are in-keeping with the street scene and also help to support the regeneration programme which is a key priority for the Council. Consents can be granted for a minimum of 3 months and a maximum of 12 months. The current charges for street trading are split into 2 tiers which depend upon the location of the 
pitches and associated footfall. For guidance purposes, charges for the period 1 April 2015 to 31 March 2016 are detailed in Table 1 overleaf.

Appendix B provides a plan of the 11 designated pitches through the City Centre and Appendix C provides photographs of the sites.

Once an application is received, City Centre Management reserves the right to seek the views of various internal departments, external agencies and stakeholders. A consultation period of 28 days is built into the process to allow for consultation with the following groups: 

  • South Wales Police
  • City and County of Swansea Food and Safety
  • City and County of Swansea Highways Section
  • City and County of Swansea Trading Standards
  • City and County of Swansea Planning Section
  • Mid and West Wales Fire Service
  • Swansea Business Improvement District
  • Castle Ward Members

The decision process usually takes 6 weeks from the date of an application being submitted to City Centre Management. This is subject to the applicant completing the necessary paperwork and responding to any requests for further information in a timely manner. For information the process by which applications are approved is set out in Appendix D. Contact details for the key organisations involved in the application of the Street Trading Scheme together with several useful website addresses can be found in Appendix E of this document.

The person applying for Consent must:

  • Be 17yrs of age or over to apply or hold a Consent
  • Complete in full the application form (see Section 5)
  • Provide evidence of current Public Liability Insurance with a minimum cover of £5 million.
  • Pay the required fee (see Section 3, Part G)
  • Have an up to date Police National Computer (PNC) check no older than 1 month
  • Play a major part in the business

Renewal Applications

  • Renewal applications must be accompanied by two current colour passport type photographs of the applicant and one recent colour photograph (taken in the last month) of the vehicle / unit used.
  • Renewal applications will be sent out to traders 60 days prior to cessation of the consent. This allows for 30 days for the application to be completed and for a new PNC to be applied for, then 30 days for the consultation process and issuing of new consent documents.

Guidance for Completing a Street Trading Consent Application

The following guidance has been prepared to assist applicants to complete the application form for street trading consent which is provided in Section 5 of this document. These should be read in conjunction with Section 4 which sets out 'Additional Information for Street Traders and Terms and Conditions' of the scheme.

Part A - Personal Details

Please provide the following information:

  • Full name and address of the applicant where living at present.
  • Telephone number of present address and mobile telephone number and email address of applicant.
  • Applicants must be over 17 years of old so date of birth information is required.
  • Registered (or proposed - if starting up) trading name of business.
  • Details of how long applicant has been trading.
  • Provide two recent passport type photographs of applicant.

Part B - Trading Details

  • Set out the preferred pitch/es being applied for as per the information found in Section 1 and Appendices B and C. If more than one pitch is being requested, indicate preferences in rank order.
  • Detail the days and hours being requested for trading. The sites are available from Monday to Saturday from 07:00am -18:00pm hours unless otherwise agreed in writing with City Centre Management. National restrictions apply to Sunday trading and bank holiday Christmas Day and Easter Sunday.
  • All vehicles, e.g. towing and delivery vehicles, must be removed daily before 10.30am hours and not return until after 16:00pm hours.
  • Information is required as to what products and services are being proposed. As this will be a key aspect of the decision making process, the applicant should provide as much information as possible (on a separate sheet if necessary) plus images of the street trading lines being applied for.
  • Confirmation is sought as to whether the applicant is a registered Street Trader in another authority. If yes, give the local authority's full address, contact person and contact number so that the necessary checks can be undertaken.
  • All units must be removable.
  • Dimensions of the stall/ unit are required to ensure that the stall is not larger than the space/ pitch available the size of which is 3.5mx2.5m. Traders must restrict their stock and display to within the pitch area. Use of the space surrounding the stall, for example for seating maybe available, details of which are requested in Part E of the application form.
  • The design and appearance of the stall/ unit will be critical as to the judging of each application received. The Council is keen to raise the standards of street trading in the City Centre and a comprehensive response will therefore be required. Please provide at-least two colour photographs or good design drawings of the vehicle/ unit that you intended to trade from. This should be front and side views. The design and colours of the trading unit need to comply with City Centre Management guidelines which are stated on Page 7 under Street Trading Unit / Vehicle.
  • If the stall/ unit is owned by a third party provide their name, address and contact details. 
  • Details and the vehicle registration of the vehicle proposed to tow the street trading unit / stall are also required.

Part C - Trading Vehicle or Stall Detail

  • All units must be removable.
  • Dimensions of the stall/ unit are required to ensure that the stall is not larger than the space/ pitch available the size of which is 3.5mx2.5m. Traders must restrict their stock and display to within the pitch area. Use of the space surrounding the stall, for example for seating maybe available, details of which are requested in Part E of the application form.
  • The design and appearance of the stall/ unit will be critical as to the judging of each application received. The Council is keen to raise the standards of street trading in the City Centre and a comprehensive response will therefore be required. Please provide at-least two colour photographs or good design drawings of the vehicle/ unit that you intended to trade from. This should be front and side views. The design and colours of the trading unit need to comply with City Centre Management guidelines which are stated on Page 7 under Street Trading Unit/ Vehicle.
  • If the stall/ unit is owned by a third party provide their name, address and contact details.
  • Details and the vehicle registration of the vehicle proposed to tow the street trading unit/ stall are also required.

Part D - Additional Information & Character

  • This section aims to help ascertain the ability of the applicant to professionally run a street trading pitch in the City Centre and to meet the terms and conditions of the consent.
  • If the applicant is currently a street trader within Swansea give details of where your pitch is and how long you have been trading for.
  • Information regarding the applicant's street trading history is required in terms of whether they have been refused or revoked consent previously, from which local authority and the approximate date this occurred.
  • The Council will not permit trading unless the consent holder has a current insurance policy against public liability and third party risks. The minimum public liability insurance cover shall be £5,000,000, and must cover your stall/ unit and any additional equipment under your control. A copy of your current Public Liability Insurance certificate is required. No Consent will be issued and trading cannot commence until the policy is produced to the City Centre Management and cover is confirmed. 
  • Employee liability insurance is the responsibility of the applicant, as is any insurance regarding fixtures, fittings or stock.
  • Details of the employees who would work at the stall if consent is granted are needed so that identification can be checked and scheme ID badges subsequently issued. This must include 2 passport type photographs with confirmation of full name and address. Whilst staffing and recruitment may be subject to whether consent is granted such information must be confirmed in advance of trading being commenced. Any subsequent changes to the employee details must be reported to City Centre Management. 
  • It is a standard practice of the Council to request bank details where a financial commitment is being requested. Confirmation is therefore sought that the applicant holds an active bank account and that this has been the case for a period of time. 
  • An up to date Police National Computer (PNC) check is required as a standard part of the application process. This provides the Council with information that the street trading applicant is of a fit and proper character to run the business. PNC checks must be applied for in sufficient time (it takes up to 40 days to obtain from Disclosure Scotland) to be submitted prior to consent being issued. Whilst convictions or cautions may not prevent consent, the nature and timing of those found may affect the suitability of the applicant.

Part E - Food Traders

  • In order to sell food you must be officially registered to do so. Provide the date you were registered and details of which local authority you are registered with.
  • If registration has not yet taken place, details of when and how this will be arranged needs to be included.
  • You must include all of the extra food hygiene information as requested in Part E of your application on a separate sheet as per each of the headings provided. Ideally this should be submitted on different colour paper for ease of identification.

Part F - Business Case

  • This section is for the applicant to give their business case as to why they believe they should be given a street trading pitch within the City Centre.
  • Preference will be given to those who propose to sell goods or offer services that are unique in some way or currently unrepresented in the City Centre. Consideration will also be given to the types of permanent shops and businesses within the immediate area of the pitch/es being applied for.
  • The Council is keen to support new businesses and start up and business plans to grow the business will be considered.
  • Plans to market and promote the stall will also be looked positively on as well as evidence of the applicant's track record in making successful business decisions.

Part G - Payment of Fees

  • A cheque or cash for the fee for consent should be included when the application is submitted. Card payments are also accepted at the Contact Centre.
  • Cheques must be made payable to the City and County of Swansea.
  • The fee can either be paid in full for the total period applied for or a deposit given for the first full month of trading - see Table 1 on Page 3 for the current fees and charges.
  • Cheques will not be banked until which time the application is approved and a commencement date agreed.
  • Any payments by cheque will need to be cleared before trading commences. Returned cheques may incur charges and also affect the status of your application/ consent. 
  • Subject to consent being granted, if not already paid, the fee for the term agreed will either need to be made in full in advance of the start of trading or alternatively it may be spilt into monthly direct debit payments. Please indicate on the application form the preferred method and complete the Direct Debit Mandate in Appendix A if this option is required.

Declaration

  • The applicant is signing to say that they have provided true answers and agrees to abide by the rules and regulations of the Street Trading Consent.
  • A consent certificate will be issued when the application is authorised, the required fee has been cleared and City Centre Management, in conjunction with Trading Standards, is satisfied that all requirements of the application process have been met.
  • No trade will be permitted until written consent has been issued. All traders must display a current consent certificate at all times which must be visible to the public.
  • Incomplete applications will be returned with details on what further information or amendments are required. Please note, however, that this may delay the process and could ultimately affect the outcome.

Additional Information for Street Traders and Terms and Conditions

General Information

  • The Council has agreed to limit the number of food traders allowed to operate as part of the consent scheme. This is to ensure the scheme continues to allow a variety of goods to be sold in the consent area.
  • When granting consent, the Council may attach such conditions to it as they consider reasonably necessary to prevent obstruction of the street, danger to persons using it, or detriment to nearby businesses. Failure to comply could result in prosecution and/or the consent being revoked.
  • A consent may be granted for any period upwards from 3 months and not exceeding 12 months, but can be revoked at any time.
  • Where the Council refuses an application the applicant will be informed in writing of the reasons for not granting the application. The decision of City Centre Management is final. The Street Trading Policy does not allow legal appeals against the decision of the Council in relation to the issue of a Street Trading Consent. Complaints received will be dealt in line with the Council's Corporate Complaints procedure.

Food Trade Only

  • The applicant's food business must be registered under food safety legislation and be compliant with the relevant legislation.
  • If the applicant is prohibited from running a food business their application will not be considered.
  • There are specific requirements relating to the preparation and sale of food that must be observed.
  • The legal requirement to register is found in Article 6(2) of Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 on the Hygiene of Foodstuffs.
  • You must register your food business with the local authority in whose area the vehicle is stored overnight when not in use.
  • The applicant and their staff will need to have received basic food hygiene training and certificates must be available for inspection at any time.
  • For further advice and information regarding the requirements and process of preparing and selling food and relevant trading standards, please contact the City and County of Swansea Food and Safety and Trading Standards (01792) 635600.

Site Allocation

If more than one application is received for the same pitch, the following additional criteria will be applied:

  • Preference may be given to an applicant for a named site where the applicant can show that they have traded from the same location for the longest period of time. 
  • Preference for a particular site may be given to an applicant who has demonstrated that their street trading unit fits in most favourably within the City Centre's street scene and/ or that they have something unique or different to sell.
  • The Council may restrict the sale of goods by street traders to types which are not in direct competition with shops, sales outlets or other street traders in that immediate vicinity. 
  • Additional seasonal pitches may be available for certain types of goods at the discretion of City Centre Management.

Street Trading Pitch

  • Planning consent for each pitch will be held by City Centre Management.
  • The scale and design of the stall must be submitted to and approved by the Local Planning Authority prior to the initial siting. This will be facilitated by City Centre Management.
  • The size of each pitch will be 3.5 metres by 2.5 metres. Under no circumstances will vehicle/ unit be larger than this. Awning, gazebos or any additions to the vehicle / unit must remain within the boundary of the pitch and be permitted as part of the original application process.
  • Use of seating maybe considered in line with the Council Street Café Licencing scheme which is subject to separate criteria.

Street Trading Unit/ Vehicle

  • Materials and colours used should be sympathetic to the area and street scene in which the street trading pitch is set and designed to harmonise with its surroundings.
  • No fluorescent colours or plain white will be accepted. Preferred base unit colours are dark e.g. racing green, navy blue or burgundy.
  • Sign-writing and branding will be professionally designed and installed and look appealing.
  • Vehicles should be designed so not to have a dominant or overbearing appearance in terms of size bulk and scale.
  • Tow bars, generators and other external elements should be covered.
  • Before trading for the first time an authorised officer of the Council will inspect the vehicle/ unit to ensure it meets with the terms of the submitted application.
  • In the event of the consent holder intending to change his/ her vehicle or mode of selling, details should be supplied in advance to City Centre Management who will inspect the proposed new vehicle or stall and advise the trader on suitability.
  • Daily on-site checks will be carried out by the City Centre Rangers to ensure compliance with the terms of the approved application and to ensure public safety.
  • Street Trading Consent is for the trading unit only and does not include additional items such as 'A' boards or street café furniture, etc. In some cases it may be possible to apply for additional licenses for these items.
  • The fee does not include any provision for cleaning. It is the responsibility of the street trader to keep the site and the surrounding area clean and tidy during the hours of trading and to remove all refuse at the end of each trading day. If there is evidence the area is not being kept tidy, the applicant will be subject to disciplinary action. Public litter bins must not be used for trade waste and commercial waste removal must be arranged with an appropriate provider.
  • Small super silent diesel generators may be allowed by agreement. Please specify the make, model and age of any generator that you wish to use.
  • Food traders must take action to minimise cooking smells wherever possible.

Operators

  • All existing vendors will be offered priority until their existing consent is surrendered, revoked or rendered void due to non payment of fees.
  • Mechanical vehicles servicing pitches will not be allowed into the City Centre pedestrian areas during restricted times.
  • The operator of the pitch will be responsible for the set up, removal and storage of their street trading unit overnight.

Consent Fees

  • The fee for each pitch includes both the consent and pitch rental fee.
  • Fees are payable in advance. The options for paying are either to pay them in full at the start of the trading period or monthly by Direct Debit (see Appendix A).
  • Applications must be submitted with application fee (in cash or cheque) either in full for the term being applied for or to cover the first month of trading. Details of these are set out in the fees and charges schedule at the beginning of this document.

Failure to Make Payments

If the consent holder fails to pay any moneys owed to the Council within the time periods detailed in their consent license documents and agreement, the Council has the right to terminate or curtail the consent period with immediate effect and to pursue the consent holder for the sums owing through all legal means.

Trading Period

  • The street trading consent is for every week of the calendar year and it is expected that the trader will operate every week for the duration of their consent period. If the trader is absent for more than two weeks without notice their commitment to trade will be questioned and may be terminated.
  • Bank holidays are treated the same as any other day, however, trading will not be expected on Christmas Day and Easter Sunday.

Health & Safety

  • All traders are responsible for keeping themselves informed about and complying with all relevant current health and safety legislation relevant to their trade including disabled access criteria.
  • Food traders using gas cylinders for cooking must be vigilant in the use and maintenance of their equipment and be mindful of public safety at all times.
  • A fire safety risk assessment must be completed by the stall-holder and submitted to City Centre Management in advance of the commencement of trading.
  • Generators where they are permitted must be well maintained, diesel and very quiet.
  • During extreme weather conditions when it would not be advised to travel or trade, it must be agreed with City Centre Management on the morning of the day in question that an official 'Bad Weather Day' has been declared and traders will not be charged for the day. The decision will be made by City Centre Management taking the information provided by the trader and the conditions into account. The decision of City Centre Management is final.

Additional Information

  • In relation to the Christmas Market or other organised events, some of the designated pitches may be affected. Such pitches will be incorporated into the event or an alternative location offered for the duration of the event.
  • The vendor shall have the option of either choice subject to any additional rental costs of being involved in the event being met by the vendor and subject to the landowners (usually the Council) terms, conditions and permission.

Freedom of Information

The City and County of Swansea Council is committed to complying with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) which applies to all recorded information that it holds or is held on its behalf. Information that is provided to or held by the Council will be processed and disclosed strictly in accordance with the FOIA, the Data Protection Act 1998 or other appropriate legislation.

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