The owner of a Suffolk tearoom has said outdoor dining 'gives people other options' to sitting inside after her business applied for a pavement licence.

Nutshells by-the-Sea is one of two premises in Hamilton Road, Felixstowe- the other being Costa Coffee- to have applied to East Suffolk Council to renew their permissions to have tables and chairs outside.

Hospitality businesses were first allowed to have extended outdoor seating in June 2020 so customers could dine safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, but temporary pavement licences have since become permanent.

READ MORE: Nutshells by-the-Sea marks first birthday after tearoom fire

Nutshells has applied for two tables and four chairs for the area immediately outside the premises, which will be in operation between 8.30am and 4.30pm every day except Wednesdays.

Meanwhile, Costa has applied for five tables and 12 chairs for a 7m by 3m area in front of the store, which will be in use between 7.30am and 6pm, Monday to Saturday and Sunday from 8.30am to 5pm.

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The annual licences run from the end of September and therefore the time had come for the permissions to be renewed.

East Anglian Daily Times: Costa Coffee in Hamilton Road, Felixstowe has applied to renew its pavement licenceCosta Coffee in Hamilton Road, Felixstowe has applied to renew its pavement licence (Image: Newsquest)Jill Booth, owner of Nutshells, said: "We are very conscious that not everybody feels the same and by having outside tables and chairs, it gives people other choices. 

"If they don't feel comfortable sitting inside, then they can sit outside."

READ MORE: Felixstowe news

She said Nutshells had been doing good trade since opening a year ago after moving from Stowupland where a devastating fire had destroyed the business.

Jill, who co-owns with husband Ian, told the EADT they decided to open in Felixstowe because they lived in nearby Trimley and had good support in their new home from regulars who had visited their Stowupland tearoom.

Jill said: "We are very pleased with how it has been. It has been a difficult year with one thing or another, but we are happy with how it has gone, especially as we are a new business."

READ MORE: Suffolk news