Licence - house to house collections

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To carry out house-to-house collections of cash and/or goods for charitable purposes you need a permit from the local authority, unless an exemption order has been granted to the charity in question. These are granted by the Cabinet Office to certain larger charities, such as the British Heart Foundation and Cancer Research UK.

List of national exemption order holders

You must make your application at least one month before the proposed collection date. There is no fee for this permit.

We will grant a permit for a collection where the collector has agreed that at least 80 per cent of the proceeds will be given to the named legitimate charity. We are aware of some collections where less than 10 per cent of the proceeds have been given to the charity.

How to apply

You can apply online - apply to run a charitable collection (house to house) 


Persons under the age of 16 are not permitted to act as collectors and it is the responsibility of the promoter of the collection to enforce this.

What the law says

The relevant legislation is the House to House Collections Act 1939.

Application process

You must make applications at least one month before any proposed collection dates. This will give you sufficient time to order the necessary badges and certificates of authority from Her Majesty's Stationery Office.

How long will it take to process my application?

We aim to process your application within 28 days of receiving it. Please contact us if you have not heard from us by the end of this period.

How to appeal

Please contact us first. Any applicant who is refused a licence or wants to object to a condition on the licence can appeal to their local magistrates' court within 21 days of receiving notice of the decision.

Information for residents

Textile banks and charities

There are a large number of textile banks in the area. This helps people in need of clothing at home and abroad, as well as supplying the textile industry. Clothing can also be donated to jumble sales or charity shops in the borough, but must be in good condition. Soiled items and duvets and pillows cannot be accepted.

Around 7.5 billion items of clothing are placed in UK recycling bins every year, many of which still have 60 per cent of their usage left. For more information on recycling textiles and clothing, try the Salvation Army or Oxfam.

If you receive a bag through your door for charity clothing collections, please ensure that the charity is a genuine known charity as there are sometimes bogus collections made in the area. Please be aware that some bogus collectors may also collect charity bags that are not theirs.

If you are concerned about any collection bag put through your letter box please first check if it is approved by checking the list of licensed house-to-house collection in Bracknell Forest and list of charitable organisations with exemption orders in the documents section of this page. If you are unsure about a collection please contact us with details.

Please remember that clothes recycled through your local charity shops or clothes bank are very likely to generate significantly more income for a chosen charity than collections from your house.

Complaints about house-to-house collections

If you want to complain that a person carrying out a house-to-house collection is causing a nuisance or if you believe that there has been a breach of licence conditions please contact us so we can investigate.

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