NORTH Cornwall MP Dan Rogerson has proposed a new law that will help deal with street trading in Padstow and other resorts.
Businesses and residents in Padstow have been concerned that some street traders offering services like hair-braiding or henna tattoos are unregulated, and have an unfair advantage over businesses and other street traders who pay business rates or for street trading licenses.
Dan Rogerson's new Bill would change the existing street trading regulations to ensure that people providing services – as well as those selling goods – require a street trading licence to do so.
The Bill has received its First Reading in the House of Commons in response to concerns from residents, businesses, Padstow Town Council, the Harbour Commissioners and the police.
Street trading is controlled under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982. A local authority may designate any street in its area as a street where traders need a licence to trade, but the current law only covers those selling goods.
Mr Rogerson said: "Despite its complicated title (the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act (Amendment) Bill), this is a simple change in the law that would make sure that everyone in Padstow plays by the same rules.
"A lot of local people and business owners have been concerned about the unfair advantage that unregulated traders providing services in the town have over businesses and regulated street traders, and the lack of contribution they make to the town's economy.
"At the moment, the only way to tackle the problem would be for Cornwall Council to spend a lot of time and money getting a new bylaw passed by Parliament.
"My new law would be a quick and easy change to the current street trading rules and would make sure there is a level playing field for everyone in the town. I will continue to work to try and secure the Government's support for this change in the law."
Mr Rogerson's Bill would change the existing law to define street trading as offering a service, as well as – as the law stands as the moment – "the selling, exposing, offering or providing for sale of any article in a street".