House to house collection

The provisions of the House to House Collections Act 1939 and the House to House Collections Regulations 1947 requires a person wishing to move from door to door collecting goods or money for charity in South Derbyshire to obtain a licence from South Derbyshire District Council.

  • Definitions
    - 'Charitable purposes' - means any charitable, benevolent or philanthropic purpose, whether or not the purpose is charitable within the meaning of any rule of law.
    - 'Collection' - means an appeal to the public, made by means of visits from house-to-house, to give, whether for consideration or not, money or other property.
    - 'Collector' - means a person who makes the appeal in the course of such visits.
    - 'House' - includes a place of business.
    - 'Proceeds' - means, in relation to a collection, all money and all other property given, whether for consideration or not, in response to the appeal.
    - 'Promoter' - means a person who causes others to act as collectors for the purposes of the collection.
  • Exemptions
    - Home Office exemption - Holders of a Home Office exemption are exempt from requiring a house to house collection permit, however, the holder of a permit must notify the Licensing Authority of the dates that they intend to collect in within the District of South Derbyshire.
    - Collecting in a street or public place in South Derbyshire - You would need a separate street collection permit from us to collect in this way. You must not, therefore, collect money on route from house to house or pub to pub (that is, in the street).
    - Static collection tins - The leaving a static collecting tin or receptacle in a house or place of business will not require a licence.
  • General principles
    Charities must be registered with the Charity Commission or be a charitable organisation based in the District of South Derbyshire.

    Wherever possible, only one organisation shall be permitted to collect per day. More than one organisation will be permitted if the collection is taking place in different areas of the District. Applications will be dealt with on a first come first served basis.

    In general, organisations shall not be permitted to hold more than two collections throughout the District or part thereof during one calendar year. This shall be at the discretion of the senior licensing officer.

    Where further requests are received from charities that hold a Home Office exemption to collect on dates which have already been allocated, a formal request will be made for them to consider an alternative date.

    Applications will only be accepted for charitable collections to be held in the current or next calendar year.
  • Application process
    Apply and pay for a house to house collection online or complete the house to house collection application form and return to us in the post with the following documentation:

    - Literature about the charity benefiting from the collection
    - Copy of published accounts for the last two years
    - Copy of statement of accounts from the last three or four collections carried out (including collections held in other District areas)
    - Declaration from the charity that they are happy with the remuneration from the collection
    - Letter from the charity authorising the promoter to undertake a collection on their behalf, if the promoter is not an official of the charity
    - An agreement or contract details with any registered charity or individual benefiting from this collection.

    The Charitable Collections Policy  provides further details of how to apply and how your application will be determined.

    The application for a licence must be made in writing not later than one month before the proposed collection.

    We try to determine applications within 28 days of the date the full application is received. Where there are grounds which could lead to a refusal this period is likely to be extended to allow for the Licensing and Appeals Sub-Committee to determine the application. We will write to you if this is the case.

    Contact us within 28 days if we have not been in touch, to ensure the application was correctly made and received.
  • On grant of a licence
    On receiving your licence it is important for you to consider the following:

    - that you have retained and understood our house to house collection regulations controlling your collection;
    - that your collectors are over 16 years of age;
    - that you make arrangements for the return of the statement of income showing the details of monies raised.
  • Returns
    Within one month of the date of the collection, the person to whom the licence was granted shall forward the appropriate return to us. Complete a street collection return online or complete the relevant returns form detailed below.

    - House to house return - property sold (pdf, 97kb)
    - House to house return - property given away (pdf, 96kb)
    - House to house return - money collection (pdf, 95kb)

    Failure to submit a return is an offence and may result in any future applications being refused. 
  • Offences and penalties
    Any person guilty of an offence of promoting a charitable collection without a licence shall be liable, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale (currently £1,000), or to both.

    Any person guilty of an offence of acting as a collector for an unlicensed charitable collection shall be liable, on summary conviction, in the case of a first conviction, to a fine not exceeding £25, or in the case of a second or subsequent conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months or to a fine not exceeding £50, or to both.

    Any person guilty of an offence of failing to comply with the provisions of the House to House Collections Regulations 1947 shall be liable on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding level 1 on the standard scale (currently £200).

    If any person, in connection with any for a charitable purpose, displays or uses a prescribed badge or certificate of authority, not being a badge or certificate held by him for the purposes of the appeal or any badge or device, or any certificate or other document, so nearly resembling a prescribed badge or a prescribed certificate of authority as to be calculated to deceive she/he shall be guilty of an offence, liable, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale (currently £1,000), or to both.

    Any person guilty of an offence of failing to declare to a police constable his name and address and to sign his name shall be liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding level 1 on the standard scale (currently £200).

    If any person in furnishing any information knowingly or recklessly makes a statement false, he shall be guilty of an offence, and shall be liable, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale (currently £1,000), or to both.

    Where an offence under the House to House Collections Act 1939 committed by a corporation is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any culpable neglect of duty on the part of, any director, manager, secretary, or other officer of the corporation, he/she, as well as the corporation, shall be deemed to be guilty of that offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.
  • Refusal or revocation of a licence and appeals
    We may refuse to grant a licence or if it has already been granted, revoke the licence, if it appears to the authority:

    - that the applicant or the holder of the licence is not a fit and proper person to hold a licence;
    - that the licence holder has failed to exercise due diligence to secure that the persons authorised by him/her to act as collectors were fit and proper persons and that they complied with the regulations;
    - that the total amount likely to be used for charitable purposes as a result of the collection is inadequate in proportion to the amount likely to be received;
    - that money from the collection has been or is likely to be retained or received by any person which is excessive in relation to the amount collected;
    - that the grant of a licence could lead to an offence being committed under the Vagrancy Act 1824 or an offence has already been committed in connection with a collection.

    Where we refuse to grant or revoke a licence they will give written notice to the applicant or licence holder stating upon which of the above grounds this has been taken.
  • Appeals
    Any applicant who is refused a licence or wishes to appeal against the conditions can appeal to the Minister for the Cabinet Office. Appeals must be lodged within 14 days of the date of the decision. If the Minister for the Cabinet Office decides that the appeal is allowed, we will issue the licence forthwith or cancel the revocation.
  • Change of licence details
    Contact us if your licence circumstances change.