Spring Bank Holiday on Monday 27 May means all rubbish and recycling collections will be one day later that week, including Friday collections taking place on Saturday 1 June.
Recycling and rubbish collection days are changing for some households in Mendip and South Somerset. Read about the changes and how they may affect you.

Introduction

As long as you have your free permit displayed, you are not limited to how often you visit, how long you visit for or which site you visit.

Congestion, out-of-county visitors and illegal commercial waste have created problems for customers at recycling sites, put safety and efficiency at risk, and driven up operating costs. Permits help tackle this by reducing congestion, improving services and enhancing safety. Similar schemes have been introduced in many other local authorities including all of Somerset’s neighbouring authorities in North Somerset, Bath and North East Somerset, Dorset, Devon and Wiltshire.

Using your permit

Permits can be used during normal site opening hours.

Permits are the size and appearance of a credit card. They have no expiry date but are specific to the vehicle and permit holder, and cannot be transferred, sold, given away or exchanged.

The permit should be clearly displayed on your dashboard when you enter the site, and may be inspected by a member of staff.

Applying for a permit

The online application will request your name (title, forename, surname) and full postal address. If you are applying for a van permit, you will need to provide the registration, make, model and colour. If the permit is for a pick-up, including Land Rover pick-up, campervan or minibus, apply for a van permit and give the same details.

Each household is entitled to up to one van permit and one trailer permit. You can register up to two car registration numbers (not vans or pick-up trucks) to tow a trailer on any trailer permit.

If you are uncertain of the classification of your vehicle or its gross weight, the make, model and type of vehicle you own is given in your V5c vehicle registration document. Your gross vehicle weight should also be shown in kilograms. The DVLA vehicle classification of your vehicle category can be found by using the link to the DVLA website provided here. Look up your vehicle details and check the classification shown in the line called “Vehicle Type Approval”.

If you cannot find the classification of your vehicle, email Somerset Waste Partnership (SWP) customer services at wasteservices@somerset.gov.uk with the subject line ‘Permit: unclassified vehicle’ and provide the following information:

  • your name
  • your address
  • your phone
  • your email address
  • vehicle type
  • registration number

Vehicle restrictions

Trailers must be towed by a suitable vehicle for safety reasons, so you are not able to park a vehicle off site and tow your trailer in by hand. Trailers must stay attached to the towing vehicle at all times while on site. Vans, campervans, mini-buses and pick-ups, including Land Rover pick-ups, are not permitted to tow trailers of any size on to recycling sites.

If you are a trader and have a van or pick-up which is registered to your business at your home address, you can apply for a permit, but it can only be used to bring your domestic/household waste, and cannot be used to tow any trailer onto any recycling site. There is strict inspection on sites and we will investigate further if commercial misuse is suspected, and take appropriate legal action where warranted, and withdraw the permit where proven. Box vans and Luton vans cannot access sites.

If you have a company vehicle registered to a company which is not based in Somerset, you can still apply for a permit, but you must use your residential address in Somerset for the application. It is the residential address of the driver that is relevant for the application.

If you are a Somerset resident, or assisting a family member who is a Somerset resident, and have hired a van or trailer, you do not need a permit for a short-term hire of a van up to 3.5 tonne gross vehicle weight (inclusive) or trailer of 3 days or less.  Upon entry to the site speak to a member of staff, show your hire agreement, and complete the waste declaration form they provide. This waiver form is to confirm you are bringing your/their household waste only. Once completed, there is provision on the form for it to act as a temporary permit. Hire vans or pick-ups cannot bring in trailers to any site. This ‘permit waiver form’ will only be offered if the duration of hire can be proven as three days or less. Failure to provide this proof will mean you cannot deposit your waste, so you must bring your hire agreement with you.

If you have a van hired by your business or employer, you cannot use the waiver form. The form is only available to privately hired vans or trailers used for transporting domestic waste. For commercial waste disposal, please see our Business Advice pages.

You cannot visit any site with a hire vehicle or trailer if you use:

  • a vehicle with an M2, M3, N2 or N3 classification
  • any Luton van or box van, regardless of classification
  • a single axle trailer over three-metres floor length
  • any multi-axle trailer
  • a horse box, agricultural vehicle, agricultural trailer

Renewals

You will be prompted to renew an expiring permit if you provided an accurate email address at the time of application and it remains current.

If you sell the van or trailer, destroy the permit or hand it in to any recycling site. Permits cannot be transferred, sold, given away or exchanged.

Missing permits

If you lose your permit, or if your details change, please complete a new application.

If you have applied for a permit and it has not arrived, please allow 15 working days from applying online before contacting us. If you have not received your permit after 15 working days, please email wasteservices@somerset.gov.uk providing

  • your full contact details
  • the date you applied for your permit
  • the type of permit you have applied for (trailer or van), with details of the vehicles and their registration numbers

If you gave an email address, you would have been emailed with a confirmation note – we suggest you download the confirmation at the end of the application process. This can be used for up to 21 days until your permit arrives.

Commercial waste

Our recycling sites do not accept commercial or business waste. This should be taken to one of the 10 Somerset sites licensed to take commercial waste and payment made to dispose of their waste. This will be a commercial transaction and commercial users will need to comply with the permit scheme regulations regarding vehicle size and use of trailers. All waste brought to site under this exemption MUST be paid for to dispose of. Under no circumstances will vehicles bringing waste under this exemption be able to deposit household/domestic waste.

For more information, see Business waste and recycling sites.

Last reviewed: February 29, 2024 by Daniel

Next review due: August 29, 2024

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