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Scrap metal dealers

All those carrying on business as a scrap metal dealer must hold a scrap metal dealer's licence under the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013. In summary, this legislation provides the following:

  • scrap metal dealers and motor salvage operators are both "scrap metal dealers"
  • the licence application process includes consultation with the Police and Environment Agency

There are 2 categories of licence:

  • a site licence (may be for multiple sites within the council's area)
  • a mobile collector's licence (separate licences are required for each council area where collections take place) 

A "site" is any place occupied for the purposes of the scrap metal dealer's business; a site licence holder may collect scrap metal, but only by prior arrangement.

A mobile collector must not occupy a site for the purposes of their scrap metal business, but may collect scrap metal without prior arrangement.


We have power to refuse or revoke licence or impose conditions where appropriate, subject to the right to make representations before refusal, revocation or the imposition of conditions (these are limited to times of operation and a requirement that metal will be kept in its original form for minimum of 72 hours)

A copy of the licence must be displayed at the site or on a mobile collector's vehicle where it can be read by the public.

Sellers must produce prescribed personal ID (photo ID) and proof of address at the point of sale - the dealer must keep a record of the documents produced.

Cash purchases of scrap metal are prohibited - payment must be by cheque or electronic transfer of funds - the only possible exception will be where a vehicle is driveable and has an MoT certificate or has genuine potential for repair.


Apply for a scrap metal dealer's licence

Every individual named in the application (individual applicants, partners, company directors or site managers) must provide a basic disclosure certificate for criminal convictions with the application. This can be obtained online from the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Disclosure certificates must be dated no more than 3 months before the date when a valid application is received by us.

To apply, download the scrap metal dealer's licence application form (PDF) [244KB] , and return once completed to us by email to Alternatively you can send the completed form by post to: Licensing Team, Civic Offices, Union Street, Chorley, PR7 1AL.

If you need to change your existing licence, you should download, complete and return the variation application form (PDF) [245KB]


Scrap metal dealer licence fees

We have set fees for licence applications as follows: 

  • 3 year site licence £280
  • 3 year collector's licence £130
  • variation of licence £70

Applicants are strongly advised to seek their own independent legal advice before making an application for a licence.

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