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Have your say on Swale Borough Council’s Street Trading Policy

Written by on 2 April 2020

People are being asked to give their opinion on the proposed changes to Swale Borough Council’s Street Trading Policy.

The policy outlines how the council licenses street trading around the borough, including whether to approve or refuse new street trading applications and how to manage existing licence holders.

The proposed changes include a requirement for all stall holders to provide a current Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate, the correction of the current seven-metre exemption rule, route details for ice cream and food vans, and the need for all stall holders at individual events to hold their own license.

Cllr Richard Palmer, cabinet member for community at the council, said:

“Consumer protection is at the heart of the Street Trading Policy review.

“We want to make sure customers are safe and can shop with peace of mind.

“Introducing a DBS check for all traders will alert us to any previous convictions a stall holder may have, allowing us to make an informed decision on whether to approve or refuse an application.

“Requesting proposed routes, streets and stopping places for ice cream and mobile food vans will ensure we can provide a variety of choice for residents while helping to protect traders’ livelihoods.

“At the moment, anyone who holds a community event is liable for all the stall holders they choose to have on site which we don’t think it’s fair, so we’re proposing that each individual stall holder has their own license for each event.

“The most important change we need to make is the removal of the current seven-metre exemption rule.

“We’ve been operating on the basis that if a trader is seven-metres away from the roadside then they do not need a license which is incorrect. This is only accurate for London boroughs and not for Swale, so we want to correct this and make sure we are current with the correct legislation.

“Once we agree the changes to the current policy, we’ll also need to review the fees that haven’t been updated for seven years.

“We are not allowed to make a profit from licensing, so any changes to the fees will be directly in line with how much it costs for us to run the service.

“We want people to have their say on how they want their street traders and markets managed and encourage people to get in touch to let us know their views.

“The aim of the policy is to create a street trading environment that is sensitive to the needs of the local public and businesses.”

To view the draft policy visit

To comment on the policy email or write to Swale Borough Council, Licensing Department, Swale House, East Street, Sittingbourne, Kent ME10 3HT.