Like Paris, cafe culture set for Lurgan streets

Lurgan Town Centre with the new Plaza Area, War Memorial and Shankill Parish Church. INLM4311-109gc
Lurgan Town Centre with the new Plaza Area, War Memorial and Shankill Parish Church. INLM4311-109gc

Like Paris and Amsterdam, Lurgan is to ‘join’ the sophisticated international world of pavement cafe culture.

Our New York-sized streets may soon be bedecked with pretty tables surrounded by local socialites enjoying a glass of champagne.

Though it may take a hardy bunch to enjoy the new licencing laws which, due to some bureaucracy, will not come into force until October 1 this year.

It had been hoped that the new laws could be brought into force this April, however, after correspondence from the Department of Social Development, it was decided to postpone the date.

The reason given was to given Councils sufficient time to make the necessary preparations to administer the new licensing scheme.

According to Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Council, which will be ultimately responsible for the new law, the Licensing of Pavement Cafes Act (NI) is due to come into force on 1 October 2016.

A Council spokesperson revealed: “From this date Council will be responsible for considering applications and issuing Pavement Café Licences to the owners of cafes, restaurants, pubs or other premises selling food or drink.

“The licence allows the owner to place temporary furniture on a public area for the consumption of food or drink supplied in the course of the business under certain conditions.

“Council is not responsible for liquor licensing and under the Licensing Order applications made by a licensed premises must be considered in consultation with the PSNI, after which Council may impose a condition to the licence prohibiting the consumption of alcohol at the Pavement Café.”