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Public charitable collections permission

Section 119 of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 provides that any person who organises a public charitable collection requires a permit from the local authority.


"public charitable collection" means a collection from the public of money (whether given by them for consideration or not) for charitable purposes take whether in a public place or by means of visits from place to place.

 "charitable purposes" means any charitable, benevolent or philanthropic purposes whether or not they are charitable within the meaning of any rule of law.

"public place" means any place to which the public have unrestricted access. A collection can therefore take place in say, a supermarket without the Council's permission (but permission is required from the supermarket operator).

The Chartered Institute of Fundraising is the professional body for UK fundraising. They provide legal and best practice guidance including the Code of Fundraising that sets out the standards expected of fundraising including any legal requirements associated with particular forms of fundraising.

Which Collections do not require a permit from the Council?

A permit is not required for a collection which takes place in the course of a public meeting or a collection which takes place by means of unattended receptacle kept in a fixed position in a public place.

In addition, the Scottish Government may exempt certain persons. Such persons however require giving 28 days' notice of any collections in Perth and Kinross to the Licensing Team. Please note exemption charities will be given priority.  

How do I apply for a permit?

Any person authorised by the relevant charity may make an application for a Public Charitable Collection Permit 

Applications must be received at least 28 days in advance of the date of the collection. Mandatory background checks will be carried out on all applicants by Police Scotland and applicants' details will be retained on computer. You will be contacted once vetting is complete.

How much is the permit fee?

There is no fee

How will the application be decided?

Applications which do not attract any adverse comments/objections are granted under delegated powers. All other applications require to be referred to the Licensing Committee for determination. You will be advised if your application is being referred to the Licensing Committee. The Committee meets on a monthly basis.

How do you make a complaint about a charitable collection?

Complaints regarding collections undertaken without a permit should be made to Police Scotland by calling 101.

How do I apply?

Please download the relevant application form and return to Perth & Kinross Council, 35 Kinnoull Street, Perth  PH1 5GD or email it to

A collector must have a certificate of authority and display a badge showing the name of the funds or organisations which are to benefit from the collection.

28 days notice in writing and a letter from the organisation or a copy of their charity registration certificate is required before the Council will grant permission.

Last modified on 19 January 2024

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