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Household waste and recycling centre vehicle permits


There are important changes to how the HWRC are operating during Covid-19 please go to Household Waste and Recycling Centres Covid-19 to find out more.

If you have a large trailer or a commercial vehicle designed to carry goods, you need a permit to use the Household Waste and Recycling Centres (HWRCs). 

Permits are free for households in Cornwall and you can use them at any of our HWRCs. Please note that we cannot accept commercial/trade waste.

The following rules apply:

  1. Only one permit per household is allowed; if there is more than one vehicle at your property, you will need to decide which one to register for a permit.
  2. The address associated with the permit must be a domestic property that is registered for Council Tax.
  3. The permit allows you up to 12 visits in the 12 month period from the date of issue to dispose of household waste
  4. Your permit is valid until all 12 visits have been used.
  5. Once you have used all 12 visits, you can apply for a new permit providing it is more than 12 months' since your last permit was issued.
  6. You must apply for a new permit if you have changed your vehicle or lost your permit.
  7. You must not recycle or dispose of any commercial or industrial waste at an HWRC; you are only permitted to dispose of household waste

How do I apply for, renew or replace a lost vehicle permit?

Please use the button below and complete the form.  Please note that we can no longer accept postal applications due to current COVID-19 working arrangements. 

We are receiving a high number of applications at the moment. Our staff are working from home due to COVID-19 restrictions. This is affecting our turnaround time and access to outgoing postal services.

  • If your application is approved, your permit will be issued within 28 calendar days of receipt. Permits are posted 2nd Class. Please allow a few days extra for it to arrive
  • If we need further information to process your application, or if it's not approved, we will contact you by email

Please be patient. Our Contact Centre staff are taking more calls than normal.  Please do not ring our Contact Centre unless its more than 30 days since your application. We deal with applications in order of receipt. We will get to yours as soon as possible.  

Apply for an HWRC Vehicle Permit

Please check the vehicle table below to see if you require a permit and read the terms and conditions of our Vehicle Permit system before you apply.

If your application is approved, your permit will be issued within 14 calendar days of receipt and posted 2nd Class. Please allow a few days extra for it to arrive.

Do I need a vehicle permit?

The list below shows which vehicles are allowed at the HWRC and whether they need a permit.

VehicleAllowed on sitePermit Required

Car- including estate cars

Car logo



4X4 for example, Jeep Cheroke, Land Rover Discovery, Mitsubishi Shogun, Nissan X-Trail

Freelander logo



Pick-up truck or light goods vehicle (or equivalent) with either open back (sample photo open back pick-up) or enclosed canopy/top (sample photo enclosed back pick-up). For example, Ford Ranger, Isuzu Rodeo, Nissan Navara, Mitsubishi L200, Toyota Hilux (See note below re exempted vehicles)  

Ford pickup logo



Van under 3.5 tonnes for example, Fiat Ducato, Mercedes Vito, Renault Traffic (See note below re exempted vehicles)

peugeot van logo



Any vehicle over 3.5 tonnes

large van logo



Any van/pickup with any trailer (See note below re exempted vehicles) 

peugeot van with trailer



A car/4x4/exempted vehicle with a trailer/horsebox under 1.8m (6 feet) internal length

small car with small trailer



A car/4x4/exempted vehicle with a trailer/horsebox between 1.8m (6 feet) and 3m (9.8 feet) internal length

freelander with large trailer




Which vehicles are exempt?

A van or pick-up under 3.5 tonnes, registered as a mobility vehicle, with a blue badge clearly displayed will be allowed on site without a permit. The vehicle will also be allowed on site towing a trailer under 1.8 m (6 feet) internal length. If the mobility vehicle is towing a trailer between 1.8 m (6 feet) and 3 m (9.8 feet) it will require a permit for the trailer. Please contact us on 0300 1234 141 for further details. 

Can I bring a trailer to an HWRC?

Trailers under 1.8 m (6 feet) internal length are only permitted for vehicles that do not require a permit (subject to any vehicle exemption).

Vehicles that need a permit aren’t allowed to bring trailers on site, subject to any vehicle exemption.

Please note:  Trailers are measured on their original internal length, even if their internal dimensions have been adapted.

What if I change vehicles or move house?

  • If you change vehicles, please complete the relevant option on the form below.  Please then return your original permit along with the details and registration number of your vehicle. As long as your new vehicle is not over the size limit, we will issue a replacement permit for the remainder of its 12 months' validity.
  • If you move house, please complete the relevant option on the form below.  We will then update the details stored against your permit. 

Update vehicle/address details for an existing Permit

Do I need a permit for a hired vehicle?

If you’ve hired a van for seven days or less, you don’t need a permit to use it to bring household waste to an HWRC. You will need to show your hire agreement to site staff.  You may be asked to complete a Trade Waste Disclaimer to confirm that you are only disposing household waste.

If you’ve hired a van for more than seven days, you will need a permit - please call us on 0300 1234 141 for details.

Why do I have to complete a trade waste disclaimer?

Cornwall Council prohibits the disposal of commercial and industrial waste at HWRCs.  If site staff are not sure whether your waste is household waste or commercial/trade waste, you may be asked to complete a form to declare that it is only household waste.