The situation with food trucks being refused permission to trade at Oak Taverns pubs across the constituency was drawn to my attention by several constituents. I understand that a number of pubs across the constituency had allowed independent food vendors in mobile vans to park on their land to provide food for people using the pub and the community at large. Whilst the vendors themselves are licensed for their trade it emerged that South Oxfordshire District Council (SODC) had raised concerns as to whether all legal requirements were being met. As a result all outlets were closed resulting is lose of trade for them and a knock on effect for the pubs.
I fully appreciate that times have been difficult for pubs following Covid and believe that it is a creative move to seek to expand trade in this way. As such I wrote urgently to the Chief Executive of SODC to express my concern and to seek a full understanding of the situation. I asked for urgent action on the issues raised by the Licensing Department at the Council to be quickly resolved.
Following this SODC put a statement on their website in which they said that it was not true that they had banned street trading at these sites. The statement said that SODC has previously been in touch with Oak Taverns on the issue of permits. They added that they were working with Oak Taverns to resolve the situation as quickly as possible. https://www.southoxon.gov.uk/licensing/statement-regarding-street-trading-outside-licensed-venues/
I will continue to monitor the situation and hope that we will see these food outlets up and running again in the very near future.