Using the Footpath - Outdoor Dining and Trading

Council encourages businesses to use the footpath outside their shopfronts to attract customers and to add activity, colour and character to our streets, where there is sufficient space to do so.

Activities on the footpath include:Outdoor dining silhouette

  • Outdoor dining associated with cafes and restaurants
  • Displaying goods on the footpath
  • Display of an A-frame sign (limited to one sign per business where space allows)

These activities require approval as they are located on public footpaths owned and maintained by Council on behalf of everyone. Footpath space needs to be managed so all pedestrians can comfortably get where they need to go, with particular attention given to providing for the needs of people with a disability.

Council is committed to working with businesses to simplify the approval process and achieve a balance of commercial activity and public space on our footpaths for everyone to enjoy.

How do I get an approval?

Council resolved to waive all application fees associated with Footpath Activity Approvals for a period of six (6) months from the date Planning Amendment No.10 was adopted. Businesses will not be charged an application fee if they put in an application within the first six (6) months of the new approvals process.

This means all Footpath Activity Applications will be free until 24 May 2018.

Applying for an approval involves filling out an application form AND checklist (download below) and drawing a simple site plan and submitting these documents to Council in one of the following ways:

  • in person at Council’s Administration Building
  • sending a completed Application Form & Checklist (including a plan) to or
  • via post to PO Box 117, Bellingen NSW 2454.

A guide on how to draw a simple site plan and template is provided within the Application Checklist.

Council will aim to issue an approval for most footpath activity proposals within 14 days. 


For more information please call Customer & Business Services on 02 6655 7300.