A licence is issued for the occupation of the highway only. The safety responsibility of the scaffold lies with the scaffold company. This includes design, erection, dismantling, ties to buildings, lighting, netting and foundations.
Scaffolding or hoarding won't usually be authorised:
- on a carriageway or back street - each scaffold or hoarding will be erected on the footway (only in exceptional circumstances will scaffold or hoardings be permitted in such locations)
- on a highway that has a traffic regulation order restricting the parking of vehicles on that section of highway
Applying for a licence
Companies who want a scaffold licence (which is valid for up to four weeks) must register with us (pdf / 104 KB).
Registration does not give you licence to place a scaffold on the highway, it only proves to us that your company is a reputable business. To apply for a licence, you must complete an application form (pdf / 187 KB) providing all required information and return it to your local area highways office. Please also send us:
- copies of your £5 million Public Liability Insurance certificates, which clearly state the amount of public liability insurance and the expiry date
- up to date copies of your NASC certificate or copies of CISRS cards for ‘Scaffolder’ or ‘Advanced Scaffolder’
We cannot process your application without these documents.
A decision will usually be made within three working days of receiving the application.
If your scaffold will affect street cleaning, car parking or refuse collection - particularly in back streets - contact your district council before applying to us for a licence. Where proposed scaffold/ hoarding takes up highway space where there is an order relating to on-street parking charging, the applicant must reimburse the relevant authority for loss of income. An agreement must be obtained before a licence is issued.
We do not charge VAT on a scaffold licence. However, if the scaffold company you are dealing with is VAT registered they are required to charge you VAT at the standard rate for both the skip licence and any associated administrative charges. For costs, see our list of fees and charges.
You can view our procedure for scaffolding on the highway here (pdf / 838 KB).