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Street collections licence

Any person who intends to either collect money or sell articles for the benefit of charitable or other purposes in any street or public place requires a street collection permit from Cornwall Council as the licensing authority.

A street includes any highway or public bridge, road lane, footway, square, court, alley, or passage, whether a thoroughfare or not.  Public place includes any area which the public have access.

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It is Cornwall Council's interpretation of the Police, Factories, etc. (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1916, that direct debit fund-raising is not caught by the Act.

Each of the former district councils adopted Regulations which prescribe certain rules for the conduct of collections in the former district areas.  These regulations can be obtained from your local licensing office.  Cornwall Council is in the process of making one unified set of regulations to cover street collections across the county. 

The council has produced guidance notes which explain the circumstances in which a permit is required from Cornwall Council as the licensing authority and the duties imposed on persons promoting or taking part in such collections. 

The Cornwall Council, in order to share available dates between a number of organisations, will allocate dates according to various area policies (which are based on arrangements in place prior to a unitary authority).  Please note that Cornwall Council is currently considering adopting one policy to cover the whole of Cornwall and the website will be updated when a new policy is adopted.  Please contact the licensing services for details.

Prior to making an application you will need to check availability of the date/s you require with licensing services.

Applications for a licence must be made in the prescribed form to the licensing authority not later than the first day of the month before the month when it is proposed the collection will take place.  

Apply for a street collection licence

Within 28 days after your street collection, you are required to submit a return form.  

Submit a street collection return form


Please send postal forms to Licensing, Cornwall Council One Stop Shop, Dolcoath Avenue, Camborne, TR14 8SX.

Your application will be referred to the Police for comment.  If there are no objections to the application then an officer of the licensing service can issue the permit.

If an officer is not able to determine the application then it will be referred to the appropriate Committee of the Council for a hearing of the application.  If the application is refused you will be advised of the decision in writing.  The committee's decision is final and there is no right of appeal.

Tacit consent applies to these applications.  This means once that if you have not received a response from licensing services within 28 days, you can assume your application is granted. 

Please note however that you must be in possession of a licence to carry out a collection.  Licences are issued in the month before a collection date.  If your collection date is approaching and you have not received a licence please contact licensing services.

There is no fee charged for street collection applications.

Please contact licensing services with your requirements.

If you have a complaint about a collector then please contact licensing services in the first instance. We will try to assist you or direct you to the appropriate organisation.