Scrap metal dealer licence

If you run a business that involves buying or selling scrap metal, you will need a scrap metal dealer licence. This includes motor salvage operators; businesses that buy written off vehicles for them to be repaired and re-sold or recover parts from vehicles for them to be sold on.

Manufacturing businesses that produce scrap metal as a by product of a manufacturing process do not need a licence.

If you are unsure as to whether you need a licence or not, please contact us.

There are two types of scrap metal dealer licence: a site licence and a collector's licence. You can only hold one type of licence issued by us.

You should apply for a site licence if you use a premises in connection with your business and if you collect metal, it is by prior arrangement only eg you make an appointment. The premises does not necessarily need to be used for sorting or storing metal; it could be that you use an office. Once licensed as a site, you would not need a collector's licence to collect metal in other Council areas.

You should apply for a collector's licence if you do do not collect metal by prior arrangement eg door to door collections. If you are a collector, you will need a collector's licence for every Council area that you operate in.

The cost to apply for the grant of a licence is £750. The cost to apply for a further licence is £727.

You can find out how the Council constructs its fees by downloading the document Guidance on fee construction.

You can apply for a scrap metal dealer licence online.  Alternatively you can download an application form for a scrap metal dealer licence and, once completed send it into us along with the relevant fee and a subject access disclosure (see below) for every person you name on the form.  You will need to include details of any relevant offences that you have been convicted of, on your application form. A list of relevant offences is available for you to look at.

Every person named on this application will need to submit a "subject access disclosure" from the ACRO Criminal Records Office.  It is a document which lists any crimes that the person it relates to has been convicted of.  You can apply for this online by visiting the ACRO website.  If you do not have access to the internet, you can request an application form from them by phoning +44 (0)2380 479920.

We will look at the Environment Agency public register to check that you have any necessary environmental permits, exemptions or registrations and consult with the Police. We may also consult with any other person or organisation that we feel is necessary.

Once we are satisfied that that you and every other person named on the application are a suitable person, we will issue you a licence. We aim to issue your licence within two months of receiving a complete application.

Once you hold a scrap metal dealer licence, you are required to keep records of all the materials that you buy and sell.

If you hold a collector’s licence, we have a template metal record book that complies with the requirements of the legislation for you to look at.

Laws and regulation

The licensing of scrap metal dealers is regulated by the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013.