BARRY Island traders were ordered to remove outdoor tables and seating after a council officer broke the news that their licences had been revoked on March 31.

Café’s and restaurants in Friars Road, were given notice to remove the street furniture by the end of the day (July 28), but the businesses – including Teddy T’s, Rumba, Whitmore + Jackson, Romy's, and The Cove said the council highways instruction was the first they had heard of the change.

The businesses had re-opened with outdoor seating in accordance with Welsh Government guidelines.

Cardiff Council has created extra space for businesses to seat their customers, but the Vale council said it was acting on complaints that Island traders had overstepped the boundaries.


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Teddy T’s and Rumba owner, Margaret Studt, who also owns businesses in Cardiff Bay and Penarth, said she had been approached at 11am by a man from highways.

She said: “He said to me: 'I want you to take all these tables and chairs away from the outside'.

“I said: ‘I’ve got a licence on that.’

“He said: 'your licence was revoked in March' and that was it and: 'If you don’t remove them' – and I said: 'I can’t remove all this lot, I’m on my own, I’ll have to do it tomorrow.'

“He said: ‘I want it done now.

“You’ve got one hour to take these tables and chairs away.

“If not we are going to send a lorry down and they’ll pick them all up and they’ll take them away' and I’ve got to pay for it.

“He said: 'I’ve got photographic evidence that you’ve come over (the boundary)', but we never had social distancing last year.

“Even though the chairs might be slightly over, it’s a bigger social distance.

“Even though the tables and chairs are further over that way you have a 10ft social distancing going through.

“I asked: 'Is this a Margaret thing or is it for everybody?'

“He said: 'No it’s for everybody.'

“They want everything off the path.

“I’ve got everyone on the case.

“This is crazy for a half million investment – 24 seats.

”I would like the Vale council to do the same as Cardiff.

“They are blocking the streets to help people.

"I won’t be opening on August 4 inside.

“It’s spiking and I don’t feel it’s safe.

“I’m Old School.”

She added that the council had “super-destroyed” them.

“I cannot believe it when they’re telling us to go out and employ people,” she said.

“I’m trying to keep everybody safe.”

Ms Studt’s niece, Emma Clark added: “We would like the council to be a bit more helpful.

“We are open and trying to do some business and this is not giving us any help.

“We are doing everything we are supposed to do.

“It’s the height of the season.

“We are hoping to get something back.

“We may as well shut the business down."

Romy's owner, Mr Ali, who was also visited, said: “We might as well lock it down.

“They should be patrolling the beach.”

The Cove owner, Alex Davies said: “My understanding now is back on March 31 the pavement seating licences were revoked.

“Nobody seemed to have any correspondence about this.

“I can’t find anything in writing.

“It feels like you are being penalised for trying to comply as best you can while also salvaging the last few weeks of the summer.

“We have very responsibly waited until we could put outside seating before we could sell alcohol.

“We do take the safety and the atmosphere of Barry Island very seriously.

“The last two weeks it became profitable and now we are going to lose the profitability of the business with the last two weeks of the summer.

“It’s going to be devastating.

“They said at the end of the day all the seats have to come in.

“We didn’t have to start kicking people off our tables.

“We have to reapply for our licence.

“They’ve put a fast-tracking system on their website, but the link to that is broken.

At the moment it’s a seven-day turnaround, but if you go through the usual channels it’s an 84-day turnaround.

“I just think a bit more communication would have been great.

“To wait until two weeks after we’ve opened - they’ve just started to communicate with us on this it seems fairly suspicious it’s on the day this fast-tracking system goes live.

“We would have had plenty of time to apply for our seating licence.

“Nobody knew they no longer had seating licences.”

A Vale council spokeswoman said: “All outdoor trading licences came to an end on March 31, 2020.

“Due to the lockdown restrictions that were in place at the time, these licences were not renewed.

“Once Welsh Government guidelines around outdoor trading became clear, we created a new application form for businesses to apply for temporary trading licences.

“This information has been published on the council’s website and businesses are being supported by our tourism and marketing team to find the relevant information to apply.

‘The highways department visited some businesses yesterday (July 28) after the council had received complaints about the trading being so far out on the footway that pedestrians couldn’t safely pass.

“Those who we told to move off the foot-ways, pending applications for the new pavement licences, already had their own outdoor space in which to trade.”’

More information on temporary trading licences is available via