Bye Bye Happy Hot Dog Man

Happy Hotdog Man © Southampton Old Lady 2015
Happy Hotdog Man © Southampton Old Lady 2015
Happy Hotdog Man © Southampton Old Lady 2015
Happy Hotdog Man © Southampton Old Lady 2015

Farewell to the Happy Hot Dog Man. Karl who has been a part of Southampton’s city centre for years, is an established Southampton character. His laugh brings a smile to customers and passers-by. Now he has been fined for not having a trading licence.

Council trading licence applications are complicated involving high insurance rates and are rarely granted. Other traders include those selling mobile phone accessories and jewellery, plus two taxi drivers. They have been going for so long now that everyone thought they were legit. It is difficult to believe that the council have only just noticed them.

James Franklin reported in today’s Daily Echo: ‘Southampton’s “Happy Hot Dog Man” is among four people fined for unlawful selling in the city centre. He as been told to pay £640 for breaching a council order.

‘City council licensing manager Phil Bates said: “We’re pleased with the result, it sends a clear message that unlicensed operations won’t be tolerated and can lead to prosecution.” A council spokesman added: “These are the traders in the precinct, some of whom we suspect are there daily.”

16 thoughts on “Bye Bye Happy Hot Dog Man

  1. Have they managed to fine any of the truly dangerous ‘traders’ that hang around pushing illegal substances, chugging and offering less wanted goods than a taxi when it rains, or a hot-dog when hungry? I’m not even averse to being cajoled into buying a new pair of cheap earrings and so long as they are not being a nuisance to the public (for which there must already be a bye-law), I’d say leave them alone. It’s hard enough to get by these days. I’d say wait until we have more jobs for people before moving the street-traders off, or find them an alternative spot and licence them.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You are not wrong. However unlicensed taxis could be dangerous. I tried to get a one-off traders license to sell hand-bound books at a festival, but I was told I had to take out insurance for £50,000 in case a book fell on someone and caused an accident. The cost of the insurance was more than I would make in a day. It is a shame there aren’t more people’s craft/vegetable markets like they have in the Mediterranean countries.


  2. It seems a terrible shame and a pity that a better way of permitting isn’t available. I (unlike many people) am in favour of regulation provided it is proportionate and sensibly enforced. It sounds like this was not the case here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are right there should be regulations, but it seems so impossible to set up something unless you are part of a big corporation. It is a pity there is not more help for those who want to set up a small business.


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