Charitable Street Collections Permit

Information and advice on applying for a charitable street collections permit.

Licence summary

To run a group or organisation that makes public street collections for charitable purposes you need a permit for the collection from your local authority.

Eligibility criteria

  1. No collection, other than a collection taken at a meeting in the open air, shall be made in any street or public place within South Somerset District unless a promoter shall have obtained from the Council a permit.
  2. Application for a permit shall be made in writing not later than one month before the date on which it is proposed to make the collection.
  3. No collection shall be made except upon the day and between the hours stated in the permit.
  4. We may, in granting a permit, limit the collection to such streets or public places or such parts thereof as it thinks fit.
  5. No person may assist or take part in any collection without the written authority of a promoter.
  6. Any person authorised under paragraph above shall produce such written authority forthwith for inspection on being requested to do so by a duly authorised officer of the council or any constable.
  7. No collection shall be made in a manner likely to inconvenience or annoy any person.
  8. Whilst collecting:
      •  a collector shall remain stationary
      •  a collector or two collectors together shall not be nearer to another collector than 25 metres.
  9. No promoter shall permit a person under the age of sixteen years to act as a collector.
  10. Every collector shall carry a collecting box.
  11. Within one month after the date of any collection the person to whom a person has been granted shall forward to us:  
      • A statement in the form set out in the Schedule to these Regulations or in a form to the like effect showing the amount received and the expenses and payments incurred in connection with such a collection and certified by that person.
      • A list of collectors
      • A list of the amounts contained in each collecting box.

Regulation summary

All street collections need to be licensed by the local authority in pursuance of Section 5 of the Police, Factories etc (Miscellaneous Provision) Act 1916 as amended by the Local Government Act 1972.



Application evaluation process

There is no fee for this permit.

The Local Authority shall consult the chief constable for the area and make such other inquiries as they think fit.

The Local Authority will consider:

  • public inconvenience
  • other collections taking place
  • the amount of money to be given to charity against the likely proceeds of the collection
  • any convictions of the organiser

Will tacit consent apply?

No. It is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted.

Please allow a minimum of 31 days for your application to be processed.


How to apply

You can apply online.

Apply online for a Charitable Street Collections Permit

Alternatively, you can apply by completing:


Failed application redress

In the first instance please contact:

The Licensing Manager
Licensing Service
South Somerset District Council
The Council Offices
Brympton Way
BA20 2HT

Telephone: 01935 462462

Contact the Licensing team online.

There is no statutory right of appeal against the refusal of a street collection permit. The only way the decision could be challenged is by an application to the High Court for a review of the decision.


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, Consumer Direct will give you advice. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Other redress

Should you find another organisation collecting in a street for which you have been given a permit, please contact the Licensing Service on 01935 462462 or contact us online.


Trade Associations

Charities Commission

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