The Licensing Act Committee of Cornwall Council has taken on the responsibility of Street Trading. It is a huge issue and it is currently a bag of worms because of the different policies, laws, rules and in many cases a free-for-all.
It is envisaged that this work will take a couple of years to complete, and I can honestly say it entails a lot of work. It will also be very controversial due to the nature of this subject.
Most of the controls on street trading are covered under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982. It allows the Council to designate any street as either:
1. Prohibited Street – a street in which street trading is prohibited
2. Consent Street – a street in which street trading is prohibited without concentrate of the Council.
3. Licence Street – a street in which street trading is prohibited without a licence granted by the Council.
It will also cover the controversial areas of trading in lay-bys. This will include selling of motor cars, food and other services.
Aside from street trading, there is also the issue of Pedlars. This issue is covered under the Pedlars Act of 1871 and are issued by the Police. A basic definition of a Pedlars is:
A Pedlar is required to go to his customers. He is permitted to stop and then trade, but he is not permitted to set-up a stall in a pre-selected location.
For many areas the issue of Pedlars is a concern due to the antiquated law. Unless the Act is a repealed, or amended little will change.
My worry about this work is the issues of resources and will any extras be made available to cover this huge workload. There is also an election in 2013 and all this work could be for nothing as the new Authority could kick this work into touch.
I guess time will tell……