Commercial Clothing Collections

The Council will usually only allow one commercial clothing collection to take place per month where no National Exemption Order is held.  Where a charity carries out its own collections without third party involvement, these may be licensed at the same time as an NEO collection if there is space available in the diary.  We will not usually licence a commercial clothing collection at any time where nationally exempted charities are also carrying out a clothing collection.  This is in accordance with our Charity Collections Policy 2017-2020.  Each application is treated on its merits.


'We have reviewed this statement as at 29 June 2020 and are asking all charity collectors, buskers and others that have not already done so to cease activities to comply with PHE guidance on social distancing and avoiding going out except for essential reasons. We note there is no definitive Government guidance in respect of clothing collections.  In order to make a decision to lift the suspension now would require the Council to seek assurances/disclosure of risk assessments from each collector to ensure that by lifting the suspension we are not exposing residents to increased risks or facilitating breaches of the relevant COVID Regulations.  In the absence of such evidence from each collector, it is believed to be in the interest of protecting public health to keep the suspension in place until such time that the relevant COVID Regulations are amended. Licences that have been granted can, subject to availability, be moved to a future date. That new date will be confirmed upon receipt and consideration of such a request.  No new applications will be granted until further notice.


We are also asking nationally exempted charities and third party fundraisers to abide by this request and to follow guidance issued by the relevant national organisations and Central Government.  We will review the position again once shielding is 'paused' on 1 August 2020. 

For further guidance, please check the regular updates provided by Central Government and the Charity Commission:



Some collections do not need a licence. Unlicensed collections and those pending approval are listed below.


Unlicensed companies/charities

The following commercial clothing collection companies and/or charities have been refused permission to collect in Runnymede within the last 7 years:

  • Intersecond Ltd - 2015
  • Byronswell - 2013

Information received from residents (usually collection bags being delivered to residents) suggests that the following commercial clothing collection companies and/or charities could be operating in Runnymede without a licence -

  • Your Donation Limited (Boot out Breast Cancer) - June 2019


Pending applications and licences not granted

The following applications have been received within the last 12 months but no licence has been granted.  This could be because further information has been requested from the applicant and is still being considered.

  • Audosta Limited (Woodlands Cancer Care) - application October 2018; not granted owing to no available dates for the period applied for. 
  • UK Clothing Caravan (Blesma - application November 2019; not granted owing to no available dates for the period applied for. 
  • Your Donation Limited (Boot out Breast Cancer) - application August 2018; not granted owing to no available dates for the period applied for. 
  • Street Runners Limited (Kent Association for the Blind, Rainbow Trust, Rockinghorse Childrens Charity) - application August 2018. No licence issued.


Compliance Guidance for Commercial Participators (Commercial Clothing Collections)

The Committee of Advertising Practice has published Icon for pdf guidance [494.12KB] which explains how commercial participators should amend their advertising on charity bags to comply with a ruling by the Advertising Standards Authority which requires commercial participants to communicate their name and company status on both sides of the bag.  If the bag features a charity's name it must not be given greater prominence than the name of the company undertaking the collection.  Commercial clothing collection companies were required to amend their advertising by 2 June 2017.

Those who are unable or unwilling to follow the rules may be referred by the ASA to Trading Standards under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

The House of Commons published a briefing paper called Bogus Charity Clothing Collections in May 2017.

The Fundraising Regulator published article on Clothing Collections.

If you are unsure whether a collection is authorised please email