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Clampdown on rule-breaking scrap yards

Unannounced visits on scrap yards by a team including Boston Borough Council officers discovered two potentially unlicensed sites which will be investigated further.

And one licensed operator was found not complying with record-keeping requirements. A warning and advice was given for full compliance.

The inspection teams included officials from the Environment Agency, Lincolnshire County Council and Lincolnshire Police.

Commercial vehicle dismantling and scrap metal businesses need permits to operate, both from the Environment Agency and other authorities. When a vehicle has reached the end of its useful life it must be scrapped at an authorised treatment facility. This is usually free, however the licensed facilities are allowed to charge for handling and disposing of vehicles that are missing essential parts. If a vehicle has been damaged, and written-off by an insurance company, they'll usually dispose of it. 

Environment Agency Enforcement Officer, Peter Stark said: "We want the industry to operate on equal terms and we receive a tremendous amount of support from legitimate collectors and yards. We will continue to engage with illegal operators, provide advice to those that want to comply and stop those that flout the regulations.

"We work to ensure there is no harm to people and the environment from these sites treating waste vehicles and scrap metal."

If you are selling your scrap to a collector or yard please ask to see their scrap metal licence, issued by Boston Borough Council, and do not under any circumstances ask for cash; you should be paid by cheque or bank transfer. 

If you want to dispose of your old vehicle, ensure it is taken to a permitted site where it can be fully de-polluted without the risk of harming the environment.

For further information on Scrap Metal Dealers licences, contact Boston Borough Council on 01205 314242 or email

For further information on how to register as a waste carrier, contact the Environment Agency on 03708 506506,

For advice on operating a waste business, contact the Environment Agency local team on 01522 785344. Details on the permits available can be found on our website - - by searching under 'environmental permitting'

For fire safety advice contact Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue on 01522 582222,

For waste planning advice contact Lincolnshire County Council, 01522 782070,