Licensing of scrap metal dealers


Apply for a scrap metal dealer's licence

This information complies with the new EU Services Directive that came into effect on 28 December 2009. This new directive aims to make it easier for businesses to set up or offer their services anywhere in the EU and apply and pay online for a licence. The directive covers a wide variety businesses including accountants, builders, food services, and leisure services.

Other services such as education, health, transport, planning, gambling, taxis and social services do not fall within the scope of the directive.

If you wish to use the old forms then download the application form and return the completed form to Regulatory Services, Northampton Borough Council, The Guildhall, Northampton, NN1 1DE

Licence summary

To operate as a scrap metal dealer, you need to obtain a licence from us

Eligibility Criteria

A scrap metal dealer shall be classed as requiring a licence if any of the following apply:

The business undertaken by a person consists wholly or in part of buying or selling scrap metal, whether or not the metal is sold in the form in which it is bought.

Two types of licence may be issued:

  1. A Site Licence

A site licence authorises a person or company to operate as a scrap metal dealer from identified sites. Site licences also allow the scrap metal dealer to transport scrap metal to and from those sites.

  1. A Collector's Licence

A Collector’s Licence allows a person to collect scrap metal in the issuing authority’s area.

A site is defined as ‘any premises used in the course of carrying on business as a scrap metal dealer (whether or not the metal is kept there)’.

A collector is defined as a person who carries on business as a scrap metal dealer otherwise than at a site, and regularly engages in the course of that business in collecting waste materials and old, broken, worn out or defaced articles by means of door to door visits.

The following fees apply:

£400 – Site Licence

£300 – Collector's Licence  

£150 - Site and Collector Variation

Application Evaluation Process

Applicants must provide the following:

  1. A completed application form
  2. The required appropriate fee
  3. A Basic Disclosure Certificate for all relevant persons named in the application.

The licence holder must notify Northampton Borough Council of any changes to these details or if they cease to be a scrap metal dealer.

Will Tacit Consent Apply?

Tacit consent do not apply in relation to scrap metal dealer licence applications as there is an overriding public interest in ensuring that the suitability of applicants is assessed before the licence is issued.

Apply online

Apply for a Scrap Metal Dealer's Site Licence or a Scrap Metal Dealer Collector's Licence 

Inform Northampton Borough Council about a variation to an existing Licence 

Failed Application Redress

Please contact Northampton Borough Council in the first instance.

Licence Holder Redress

Please contact Northampton Borough Council in the first instance.

Consumer Complaint

We would always advise that in the event of a complaint the first contact is made with the trader by you - preferably in the form a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked, if you are located in the UK, Citizens Advice Bureau can give you advice. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Other Redress

E.g. about noise, pollution, etc. Also should one licence holder complain about another.

Trade Associations

British Metals Recycling Association (BMRA)

Motor Vehicle Dismantler's Association of Great Britian

British Vehicle Salvage Federation