Waste e-permit scheme

The electronic permit (e-permit) scheme applies to residents taking household waste to any of the nine household waste recycling centres (HWRCs) in the county. If you use a car towing a trailer or a commercial-type vehicle to access our sites you will need to have an e-permit.

The waste e-permit scheme limits commercial-type vehicles to 6 visits over a 12-month period. You can apply for an e-permit and renew or edit an existing e-permit below.

Apply for a waste e-permit

Renew or edit an existing waste e-permit

Answers to questions about waste e-permits

HWRCs are provided for householders to dispose of their waste from their own home, safely and conveniently for free.

Unfortunately, some traders use the HWRCs to illegally dispose of their commercial waste, leaving the Northamptonshire tax payers to foot the bill for tens of thousands of pounds for its disposal.

Not only is there a financial cost to the tax payer, there are legal and Duty of Care implications too. In Northamptonshire, five of the nine HWRCs have a licence stating they are for the disposal of household waste only. This licence is issued by the Environment Agency (EA) who regularly monitor waste being taken to the sites. If commercial waste is found to be being disposed of at these sites under the pretence that it is of a household nature, it is possible that the Environment Agency could revoke the HWRC licence and the site would have to close.

As well as potentially putting these site's licences at risk, the depositing of trade waste at the HWRC sites is a criminal offence under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and could result in a £50,000 fine and / or two years imprisonment for the offender.

Another implication of unauthorised trade disposal, is the added waiting times for legitimate site users, by increasing traffic and congestion for householders.

E-permit schemes are a nationally recognised method of regulating commercial waste tipping, and therefore helping the Council to meet its Duty of Care requirements. Commercial vehicles are more likely to be carrying trade waste than a standard car and by introducing the e-permit scheme, it limits the number of times vans can use the sites, whilst still allowing residents the convenience of using any van or large trailer that they have access to.

The Council's designated, licenced trade waste sites are Ecton, Sixfields, Rushden and Kettering HWRCs.

For the purpose of the e-permit scheme, a commercial-type vehicle has any one of the following:

  • any vehicle without side rear windows
  • any flat-back vehicle (including flat-backs with covered load space)
  • any pick-up or crew cab vehicle (two or four seater)
  • any car or MPV where some seats have been removed
  • campervans and minibuses where the rear seats and fittings have been removed
  • passenger vehicles where the rear seats have been removed (i.e. not being used for what they were intended e.g. to 'transport passengers'), may also be classified as a van
  • any trailer

If you believe your vehicle is being incorrectly classified under our e-permits scheme, please contact us, and we will ask you to provide further information.

​Vehicles allowed on site without a permit tick



estate car

 ​Estate cars or people carriers


 ​4x4s without pick-up


 ​Campervans or minibuses with rear seats and fittings (used for passenger transport)

Vehicles allowed on site with a permit​​

​ ​car with trailer

  Cars towing trailers under 1.8m in length

pick-up truck

  Pick-ups and crew cabs under 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight

small van

Vans under 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight


  Campervans and minibuses with rear seats and fittings removed​


Horseboxes under 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight

​ ​van with trailer

  Any medium vehicle towing trailers under 1.8m in length

​Vehicles not allowed on site red cross


 Vehicles over 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight

large pick-up

  Pick-ups over 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight

large van

  Vans over 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight


 Trailers over 1.8m in length

If you own a commercial-type vehicle (see the list of vehicle types requiring an e-permit in the 'Do I need an e-permit?' section) or plan to transport your household waste using a trailer, you will need to apply online for an e-permit before visiting the recycling centre.

The permit is free and will entitle you to six visits per year. On arrival at an HWRC your vehicle registration will be scanned and a visit will be deducted from your e-permit.

Please use the link above.

To apply, you will need to fill in a form with your name, address and vehicle details. You will also be asked to agree a declaration to say that the waste you intend to bring to the HWRC is of a household nature and that you will abide by the HWRC site rules.

The e-permit will be generated in the form of a unique permit number that is allocated against your vehicle registration number and address. On arrival at the HWRC, your vehicle registration will be scanned by the site staff using a handheld device and you will be allowed to dispose of your waste.

The number of HWRC visits that the permit holder is allowed to make in a commercial-type vehicle or with a trailer will be limited to 6 per year and the permit can be renewed annually.

For each visit used, the e-permit holder will receive an email to say how many visits are remaining.

Yes. Trailers entering the HWRC being towed by a car will count as one of the e-permit visit used. Trailers being towed by a commercial-type vehicle will be classed as two visits used, unless the vehicle is not carrying waste.

​The permit is free.

​Provided all of the necessary criteria is met when completing the online application, the permit is issued for immediate use.

The e-permit allows you to access the network of HWRCs in a commercial type vehicle or towing a trailer a total of six times in any twelve month period.

Once all of your permitted visits are used, you will not be able to access any of the HWRCs in your van or with your trailer until the twelve month period has passed.

You may apply for a new permit once the twelve month period has passed.

​When your permit is due to expire (12 months from the date of application) you will be sent a reminder email.

If you are hiring a commercial-type vehicle or trailer to transport your household waste you still need to apply for an e-permit. You will also be required to take the hire papers and proof of residence in Northamptonshire to the HWRC. The HWRC restrictions on types of waste, vehicle size and weight still apply to gain entry to the site. Any box vans or commercial-type vehicle weighing more than 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight cannot be used.

If you hire another commercial-type vehicle within 12 months of the start of your e-permit, then you will need to use the 'edit' option on the e-permit application system with the new hire vehicle registration details. Please remember to take your hire documents and proof of address with you to the site, each time you visit with a hire vehicle.

If a commercial-type vehicle or trailer is borrowed from a friend, family member or neighbour a valid e-permit is still required.

​No. only one e-permit will be approved per address. If the household has more than one commercial-type vehicle you will have to decide which vehicle is most suitable for your use.

​No. Permits will only be issued to Northamptonshire residents.

To correctly dispose of commercial waste, please pre-sort it and take it to one of the County's designated, licenced trade waste HWRC sites (Kettering, Rushden, Sixfields or Ecton), using a valid Waste Carrier's Licence obtained from the Environment Agency.

The waste will be weighed and charged for accordingly under Urbaser trade waste scheme.

For more information of Urbaser trade waste prices, please see information on trade or commercial waste.

If you do not wish to use Urbaser trade waste service provided at the 4 Northamptonshire HWRCs, please seek alternative arrangements via a licenced commercial waste disposal company.

Apply for a Waste Carrier's licence

​No. Tenant's waste or waste arising as a result of a rental agreement is classed as trade waste because the tenants are or were paying rent to live at the property. Landlords should follow the same commercial waste disposal route, as detailed in a separate FAQ.

Site staff at all Northamptonshire HWRCs will have a hand held device to scan the e-permit holder's vehicle registration number when entering. This record of the visit will be logged electronically and the permit holder will receive an email advising how many trips are remaining. 

The waste being carried by any vehicle for disposal at a HWRC may be inspected by site staff.

The site staff at the Northamptonshire HWRCs will be carefully monitoring waste in all vehicles and will challenge anyone they think is abusing the system. All householders must comply with the site rules and all waste acceptance policies for the HWRCs in Northamptonshire.

Details of current waste policies can be found on 'What can I recycle?'.

​No, each visit will require a valid permit and will be counted as a separate visit, and deducted from your permit allowance.

No. Permits allow entry to the HWRC only. Waste must be deposited in accordance with the Waste Acceptance Policy. The waste being carried by any vehicle for disposal at an HWRC may be inspected by site staff.

The e-permit is strictly for household waste and recyclables only. Trade waste is not permitted to be disposed of free of charge under this scheme. Depending on the type of waste being deposited, permit holders and car users may still be asked to fill in a Household Waste Declaration Form to confirm that the waste is from their own household. This is not intended to inconvenience site users, but to improve the HWRC service for genuine householders. This prevents traders attempting to abuse the system by entering the site in domestic vehicles, i.e. cars.

​The Household Waste Recycling Centres do not allow vehicles onto site over 3.5 tonnes gross laden weight for health and safety reasons. If your only means of transporting your waste is in a vehicle of this size, then you will need to seek alternative arrangements via a commercial waste disposal company.

If you have bought a new vehicle which has previously been registered for a permit, then when you enter your vehicle registration using the e-permit application system, you will receive a message informing you that this vehicle is already registered.

In this circumstance, please contact waste management (epermits.ncc@northnorthants.gov.uk) and you may be asked to provide further information such as proof of ownership.

If you have recently moved house and you already have an e-permit, then please use the 'edit' option on the e-permit application system. If the previous owners of your new address had a permit you may be required to contact waste management and provide further information.

Please note, your vehicle will be recognised by the e-permit application system, so you will not be able to re-apply with the same vehicle at your new address.

​If you have a bespoke vehicle and are unsure if the e-permit scheme will apply to you, please contact waste management at       epermits.ncc@northnorthants.gov.uk.

​If your vehicle has been adapted for reasons relating to a disability to assist either you or a member of your household, then please contact the waste management team at epermits.ncc@northnorthants.gov.uk

The e-permit scheme was consulted on as part of NCC's budget proposals which were published in December 2017. The consultation was also open to all residents to respond to and it concluded on 30 January 2018. In summary, over 70% of respondents agreed with the e-permits proposal. Please see the consultation documents, which provide additional information.

All budget proposals are subject to scrutiny prior to a final decision by Cabinet and Full Council.

​Fly-tipping is a criminal offence punishable by a fine of up to £50,000 or 12 months imprisonment if convicted in a Magistrates' Court.

Find out more at Keep Britain Tidy.

During an initial period whilst the e-permit scheme is being introduced, if you arrive on site without an e-permit you may be granted a discretionary visit. However, your vehicle details will be logged by site staff and this visit will count towards one of your six permitted visits in a year.

You will not be granted a second discretionary visit and, therefore, if further visits are required please apply for a permit using the application system.​

​As part of the application process you are asked to provide some personal data. We require this information to validate your permit and in case we need to contact you. The information provided will only be processed for the purpose of providing you with a permit.

Your details will be kept on file for 15 months from the date of application. North Northamptonshire Council, working in partnership with West Northamptonshire Council will not use this information for marketing purposes or share this date with third parties, with the exception of our contractor who manages the Household Waste Recycling Centre on behalf of North Northamptonshire Council and West Northamptonshire Council.

For full details of how we process personal data please see our full privacy notice.

If you ask the council to remove your personal data under GDPR we will delete your name and email address, but we will retain your vehicle registration and address on file until 15 months from the date of your application in order to prevent permit fraud.