Scrap metal registration

The legal framework for Scrap metal registration changed in October 2014. The Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013 replaced the 1964 act and created a new licence regime for the scrap metal recycling and vehicle dismantling industries.

You should have applied for a new licence by October 15 2014. As long as you already had a licence this will be regarded as continuing while we deal with your new application. However if you have not submitted an application then you should have ceased to trade on October 16th 2014. Operating without a licence is a criminal offence.

Any person who carries on a business as a scrap metal dealer needs to be registered with the local authority for that area. The term scrap metal includes any old, waste or discarded metal or metallic material, and any item made from or containing metal and is broken, worn out or regarded by its last holder as having reached the end of its useful life. However gold, silver, and any alloy which contains more than two per cent of gold or silver cannot be regarded as scrap metal.

There are two types of licence, one for a site and the other for a mobile collector. A site licence permits you to buy and sell scrap metal from a fixed location within Barnet. Each site must have a nominated site manager included on the licence.

A collector's Licence permits you to travel within the council area to collect scrap metal. You may not take this metal back to a site that you run within the council area in order to sell it. You may only apply for one type of Licence in each council area, but you can apply to include multiple sites in that area on the one Licence.

How to apply

You can apply online. The council cannot issue a licence unless it is satisfied that the applicant is a suitable person to carry on the business of a scrap metal dealer.

We therefore need you to provide a Basic Disclosure Certificate with the application form (as well as supplying one for each of the proposed Site Managers). Any certificate produced should not be more than three months old. The certificate will be returned once the application has been processed.

In assessing an applicant's suitability, the council can consider any information it considers relevant. Applicants' behaviour in the operation of their business, such as the fact they have been operating without planning permission for their site or that they are not registered with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) under the Data Protection Act, could be factors that are considered. We will also consult with relevant parties such as the local police. We also require one passport sized photograph with each signed certification form.

The licence lasts for three years. You are required to notify us of any changes such as:

  • Licence holder's details (name or address)
  • Site licence to a collector's licence or vice versa
  • Adding, removing or changing details of sites licensed
  • Site managers

You must also inform the council within 28 days if you close your scrap metal business.


Trading Standards Team
8th Floor 
2 Bristol Avenue

Tel: 0208 359 7443

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