Local businesses are being invited to tender for ice cream pitches on Morecambe promenade following a decision by Lancaster City Council to open the trade back up to the private sector.
The city council had previously decided to sell ice creams on Morecambe promenade itself, rather than the traditional route of hiring out pitches.
The intention was to generate additional income for the council by expanding its existing catering operations.
However, following a change in the council’s administration at the local elections in May, further consideration has been given as to what other ways there might be to achieve the new council’s intended outcomes.
For this season, the council is inviting local businesses to tender for pitches. Tender documents have already been sent out and have a deadline of Thursday July 25, to ensure they are up and running as soon as possible.
Coun Dave Brookes, Cabinet member with responsibility for Environmental Services, explained: “I’m convinced that the council can make money selling ice creams and, in fact, it is already doing so very successfully at Williamson Park.
“However, simply shutting down opportunities for local businesses is not the fairest way to do this.
“In addition to generating more income, we have a number of other priorities in terms of climate change, air quality, plastic reduction and fair pay. This year we will invite tenders for the pitches along the promenade as normal. Going forward we will be asking ice cream sellers to submit bids that help us to deliver on the outcomes we are looking for.”
The council had also been intending to take over the running of cafes whose lease ended on October 31.
They too will be given the opportunity to discuss with the council how they could operate in the future in a way that delivers outcomes on climate change, air quality, plastic reduction and fair pay.