Coffee Aroma, an award-winning café in Lincoln, is one of many businesses affected by a new outside seating restriction by the county council.

The new policy, instated on January 26, limits restaurants and cafes on Guildhall Street from providing outdoor seating after 4pm.

This is due to a worry of public safety with lorries needing to use the road in the evenings to deliver goods.

Guidelines provided by the council state that at least 3.7 meters of unobstructed road needs to be available for large lorries to pass, with an additional 1.8 meter footpath for pedestrians.

Andrew Carnell, owner of Coffee Aroma, said: “I’m looking at a £400 loss each week which could potentially impact the number of staff I can keep on,” This is despite the café being open till 7pm during the week and 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays.

Mr Carnell explained that there is not a lot that can be done at the moment to solve the problem until the council’s next financial year due to a lack of resources.

The problem seems to have an ‘easy fix’ however. Mr Carnell said: “The solution is to alter the traffic regulation order at the end of the road so that lorries can turn right instead of left in the evenings.”

Councillor Robert Parker said: “The restriction on outdoor seating has been enforced after the council received complaints. If any of the owners of outdoor seating on Guildhall Street had been putting out seating outside of the times permitted, then that would have been in contravention of the permission granted.”

Mr Parker warned that if the restrictions are not followed the council could choose to withdraw permission for outside seating all together and said: “We want to encourage businesses to operate but the prime concern is the safety of pedestrians.”

Other businesses affected on Guildhall Street include Pomodoro E Basilico and The William Foster pub.

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