Move tables of lose them says council

PUBLISHED: 15:31 14 October 2008 | UPDATED: 09:47 10 June 2010

A NUMBER of Exmouth businesses have been ordered to remove pavement signs, tables and chairs or face having them confiscated. The town's businesses were recently visited by council highway officials after officers received a complaint from a member of the

A NUMBER of Exmouth businesses have been ordered to remove pavement signs, tables and chairs or face having them confiscated.The town's businesses were recently visited by council highway officials after officers received a complaint from a member of the public who claimed to have tripped over a table and chair obstructing the pavement.Business owners said they were told that any unauthorised chairs, tables and signs would be removed by lorry the following day.The council clampdown comes two years after businesses on The Strand reacted angrily when council workers confiscated scores of signs officers said were too large for the pavement.A Devon County Council spokesman said: "We received a complaint from a member of the public after they tripped, as a result of tables and chairs which they felt were obstructing the pavement. "Eating establishments need planning permission and a licence before they are able to have tables and chairs on the pavement, but our research found that none of the three cafes in that area had a licence. "We reminded the owners of this requirement and asked them to either remove their tables and chairs or apply for a licence. We are also keen to hear the town manager's view on the general matter of obstructions to footpaths, and we have a meeting planned with him soon."Laura White, 26, chef at Minnies Eatery, in The Strand, said she was initially told she had 10 minutes to remove the cafe's pavement table and chairs."I said I couldn't do it until my boss arrived so the council gave us the rest of the day. The officer said if they weren't removed he would take them in the van," she said.Franklins' owner Jacquie Haywood said the council told her to remove two chairs and a table from the front of her cafe-bar premises.When council officials last visited in 2006, Franklins lost signs worth £700 in the clampdown. "I can understand if the tables and chairs are in the way," she said. "I just think everybody should be treated the same because we all pay the same business rates.

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