Footfall in Sheffield city centre doubles as outdoor hospitality reopens - and over 60 businesses apply for pavement seating

Business is booming in Sheffield as outdoor seating at restaurants, cafes, pubs and bars reopened on Monday and over 40,000 people descended on the city centre – double the amount from the previous week.

Friday, 16th April 2021, 2:33 pm
The reopening of shops on April 12th 2021. Fargate, Sheffield. Picture: Chris Etchells

The hospitality, retail, gym and salon sectors breathed a sigh of relief on Monday when the second stage of the government roadmap meant they were able to swing open their doors for the first time in months.

Punters descended on the openings in their thousands as over 40,000 people visited the city centre on Monday, excluding The Moor – double the amount from the previous week.

As part of reopening, the council also created a free temporary ‘Pavement Café Scheme’ last year, which gives businesses the opportunity to use the pavement space next to their premises for tables and chairs, without requiring the usual planning permission, until the end of 2021.

Over 60 businesses across the city have applied for the scheme so far.

Edward Highfield, director of city growth at Sheffield Council, said: “We’ve seen most businesses working hard to establish a creative, attractive environment to welcome people back, especially in sectors such as outdoor hospitality, and I think that reflects what Sheffield’s business ethos is all about and the pride our local businesses have in what they offer.

"I hope everyone continues to support local businesses and enjoy them safely in the weeks ahead.”

Richard Eyre, interim director of operational services at Sheffield City Council, added: “Footfall in the city centre and district centres is starting to increase which is great for businesses and the city. We need to take small and careful steps as we start to come out of the lockdown and our teams will continue to visit businesses to work with them and make sure their staff and members of the public’s safety is looked after.

“I’m pleased that the vast majority of businesses are pro-active and doing all they can, however there are still a minority that go against this and where this occurs we will carry out appropriate enforcement.”

More information about the Pavement Café scheme, including how to apply, can be found on the Sheffield City Council’s website.