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Author: Charles Parker

Do you need a licence or permission to hire a skip?

Do you need a licence or permission to hire a skip?

It’s time for a clear out, or possibly a renovation, and the easiest way to get rubbish taken away without a dozen trips to the tip, is to hire a skip. However, many people are confused about whether you need to get a licence or ask for special permission in order to hire a skip.

Will it be left on public property?
If your home is facing a public road, and you want the skip to be placed on the road, then you will need to get a licence from your local council. In most areas you will find that the council will grant skip licences only to the person you are hiring from. Essex County Council for example has a list of requirements for a skip licence, including public liability insurance for £10 million, which will only be suitable for the company that will lend you the skip. Northumberland County Council specifically states that will not issue licences for members of the public, and all applications must be done by the owner of the skip.

If you aren’t sure of your council’s requirements, check their website, or phone their office and ask to speak to someone. You may find they have further advice, such as time restrictions (for example if the skip can only be in place for a certain number of days).

Additional Safety
If you are having the skip on public property then it can be a hazard to members of the public, especially at night. Your council may require you to ensure that it is properly marked, to help prevent accidents. This may include traffic cones around the outside edge, reflective strips on the body of the skip, and night-time safety lamps on the corners. They may also require that the skip company’s name and phone number is prominently displayed on the skip itself, so that if there is an accident the company can be contacted quickly.

If your skip is delivered without night-lamps or reflective strips, you should ask the company to provide them. Although the hire company has the licence, the person who is using the skip is responsible for ensuring that it is clearly marked, and you could be fined up to £1,000 if you fail to do this.

What if the skip is on private land?
If you are having the skip placed on your driveway or garden then you do not need a licence or permission. You may wish to let your neighbours know, as the truck that delivers and collects the skip could be in place for some time, and might block access to their property, but this is just a courtesy.

Skip placement restrictions
You cannot leave a skip on the pavement, as it is obstructing a right of way. You also should not block access to other people’s homes (such as having it left in the road but in front of their driveway) or on another person’s property, without their written permission.