Street collections or street sale, for charitable or other purposes, can only take place if they are properly licensed.

It is often assumed that collections can be held in shop doorways or car parks and that they do not need a street collection licence because they are being held on 'privately owned land'. This is not true, as the legislation does not mention the ownership of the land or treat collections on 'privately owned land' as exempt from the licensing regulations. When a shop doorway or car park is open for trading it is a 'public place' because the public has access at that time. No other licence would be valid.

A pedlars licence, issued by the Police cannot be used for this purpose. Only local authorities 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.

Apply online
Apply for a licence for Street collection

There is no cost for the issuing of consent but there are rules to be followed in applying. Street collections are usually made by charities. Collections usually take place in a town centre on busy shopping days. Money is collected in tins. There are regulations, which govern this type of collection. Consents are restricted to enable charities to raise money without their collections clashing with those of other charities.

Please be specific as to where you are proposing to carry out your collections as this can avoid any confusion and delays with your application.
At least one months notice should be given prior to the proposed collection date(s) in order for the service to accept the application.

Application(s) must be accompanied by the following documents, if you are collecting on behalf of a charity / organisation. 

  1. Letter of authority (from the organisation which is benefitting from the collection).
  2. Contract between the organiser and benefiting charity for proposed collection.

Failure to provide satisfactory evidence to support your application may result in your application being refused.

The purpose of the legal requirement to obtain consent is to ensure collectors are properly authorised and that money is collected in a secure way and the total proceeds collected are properly accounted for.

A copy of the Police, factories, etc. (Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1916 can be viewed at the council offices where you can also obtain an application form and a copy of our standard conditions.

A  form must be completed following the collection and returned to the Council. This form will be sent to you once your application form has been received.

Contact info
Private sector housing enforcement
1st Floor Annexe, Town Hall, Luton, Bedfordshire, LU1 2BQ
Tel: 01582 546040

PSHEnforcment@luton.gov.uk
rating button