It is illegal in this country to hold a Street Collection to collect money or sell articles for the benefit of charitable or other purposes without obtaining a Street Collection Licence from the Council if that collection is to be held 'in a street or public place'. A 'public place' is a 'place where the public has access' including shop doorways and car parks even if they are privately owned.
Only Local Authorities can issue Street Collection Licences under Section 5 of the Police, Factories etc. (Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1916, as amended by the Local Government Act 1972 and Schedule 29 of that Act.
Fees and rules
There is no cost for the Licence but there are rules which must be followed. Collections are usually made by charities and take place in town centres on busy shopping days with the money collected in tins. There are rules about these types of collection and licences are restricted to allow charities to raise money without their collections clashing with of other charities.
The law to obtain a Licence is to make sure collectors are properly authorised and that money is collected in a secure way and the total proceeds collected are properly accounted for.
Further information of the regulations can be found in the Charities Act 1992.
What if you have not heard from the Council by the end of the completion date for the application?
If you have not heard by the end of the target completion date you will be able to act as if your application has been granted. You should be aware that the timescales for applications to be considered do not start until all information needed has been received. The timescales will only apply for applications submitted electronically via the Point of Single Contact (PSC) or when the business can show proof of delivery from the post office or recognised courier.
Can I reapply if my application fails?
If your application for a licence has failed and you would like to correct what is wrong and reapply please contact the Licensing Team at:
The Licensing Authority
King George V House
King George V Road
We would always advise that if a complaint is made that you make contact with the trader yourself by letter with proof of delivery. If this does not work and you are based in the UK, contact Adviceguide UK or if you are outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre.