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Street trader licence

You need a Street Trader Operator's Licence or Street Trader Employee Licence to sell goods in a public place for money, or money's worth.

A licence granted to the operator allows that person (or persons) but every other person/employee serving the public as part of that business must also have their own employee's licence.
There are some exceptions including:

  • a person selling newspapers
  • milk deliveries
  • sale of coal

provided they are registered under the appropriate legislation.

Our Licensing Committee agreed an exemption (in August 2017) to allow for Street Trading without a Street Trader’s Licence, where both of the following apply:

  1. The vehicle, kiosk or moveable stall is operated within land covered by a Public Entertainment Licence
  2. The operator of the vehicle, kiosk, or moveable stall is the holder of that Licence or travels from place to place with that holder.

This exemption is consistent with the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, Section 39(3)(e).

What kind of licence do I need?

There are 3 street trading options for Operators:

  1. Static- if you intend to trade at a specific site(s) for longer than 20 minutes. 
  2. Itinerant- if you intend to trade from numerous locations, remaining at 1 site for a maximum of 20 minutes before moving on.
  3. Events - if you intend to trade at temporary events throughout North Ayrshire (eg galas/fetes) with the permission of the event organiser.

Traders can apply to be licensed for events only, or for static or itinerant trading with the option of also trading at events.

How long does a licence last?

Licences are available as either:

  • Full – lasts up to 3 years
  • Temporary – lasts up to 6 weeks

If you already hold a Full licence and you apply again to renew it before it expires, the licence continues even after expiry, until North Ayrshire Council make a decision on the renewal.

How to apply

Complete an application form and return it to Licensing with fee:

To amend an existing licence, complete and return a Street Trader amendment (Word, 51kb).


All fees can be found on our licence fees webpage.

Cheques payable to 'North Ayrshire Council'. Fees will not be returned for applications that are refused, or granted for a shorter period than applied for.

What happens next?

If the application has been correctly submitted with photographs and fee, it will be sent for consultation.

Applicants selling food from a vehicle, stall or kiosk may need to have it inspected to ensure compliance with Food Hygiene Regulations. A licence for a food business cannot be granted without a valid Food Safety Certificate of Compliance. Register a food business.

Applications will be advertised on this website to allow members of the public to make any objections or representations.

When all consultation reports (and any other applicable submissions) have been received, an assessment will be carried out as to whether an application can be granted by an Authorised Officer of the Council, or if it requires to got to the Licensing Committee for consideration.

If the Committee decides to have a hearing, you will be invited to that and you will be able to speak to the Committee. The majority of applications do not require a hearing and are granted by council officers.

It takes a minimum of 6 to 8 weeks to process a full (3 year) licence. Applications for temporary licences can be processed quicker. 

Licence conditions

The licence will have the council's Standard Conditions (PDF, 137kb). In some cases the council may apply special conditions appropriate to your particular circumstances.

Any conditions which apply to you will be set out in the licence document you will be given. If these are broken:

  • the licence holder can be charged by Police Scotland
  • the Licensing Committee can suspend the licence after a hearing which you will be invited to attend and have the opportunity to speak to the committee.

One of the conditions attached to this licence is that the trader must not operate within 50 yards of any fixed shop selling similar goods, or a school.

Please note: We follow National Fraud Initiative guidelines to protect against fraud.

Contact Licensing




01294 310000


Licensing Section, Legal Services, North Ayrshire Council, Cunninghame House, Irvine, KA12 8EE