A review has been launched into Casual Trading Bye-laws in Donegal following the recent spike in pop-up hot food and coffee vans.
Donegal County Council is set to spend approx 23 months examining the existing Bye-Laws and carrying out consultations to draft and adopt new regulations.
The Covid-19 pandemic, an increase in tourism and the success of the Wild Atlantic Way has led to a rise in new coffee vans and food trucks setting up on roadsides outside towns and villages. The businesses have had both positive and negative attributes in local areas.
At present, casual trading can only take place at the locations specified in the relevant Bye-laws. General Bye-Laws exist countywide, while specific bye-laws apply to casual trading areas in Bundoran, Buncrana, Letterkenny, Killybegs and Ballyshannon. The Council regulates the use of all these areas by way of licence. Persons wishing to trade must apply for a Casual Trading licence.
A dedicated member of staff has now been appointed by Donegal County Council to lead the review.
The primary objectives of the review will include identifying appropriate areas for specific designated casual trading areas, addressing the issue of unauthorised casual trading and improve the economic vitality of these areas through the designation process, generating footfall and regeneration opportunities.
In introducing the review, a representative of the council’s Planning Services department said: “Casual Trading in the County at present has both positive and negative attributes. It can often attract negative attention related to issues such as unfair competition with rate paying businesses or trading in unsuitable locations, as examples.
“There are however, many benefits to appropriate and suitably located Casual Trading designations including its potential to improve the economic vitality and provide regeneration opportunities to an area.”