Van and trailer e-permits

You can apply online for a free e-permit to use a van or trailer at the waste recycling centres.


  • Box and Luton vans or any commercial-type vehicle weighing more than 3.5 tonnes laden are not allowed on the site.
  • The use of tipping mechanisms, lifts or ramps is not permitted on site.
  • Please note these restrictions also apply to hire vehicles.
  • Trailers with a load bed longer than 3m (10 ft) are not allowed on the site.

The permit will allow 12 individual visits to the household waste recycling centres (HWRCs) in 12 months from the date of issue.

The HWRCs are for waste originating from a household only. The scheme was introduced to stop traders using the sites to dispose of trade waste.

If you use a commercial-type vehicle that weighs up to and including 3.5 tonnes laden, such as a van, pick-up or a trailer with a load bed of 1.8m to 3m (6 to 10 ft) in length, to take your household waste or recyclables or chargeable type waste from your home to Oxfordshire's household waste recycling centres, you need to apply for a free electronic permit before you visit the site.

E-permits will only be issued to Oxfordshire householders intending to deposit their household waste. They allow up to 12 individual visits to household waste recycling centres in one calendar year.

Other online services

Who needs an e-permit

Please see the table below to check if you need an e-permit for your vehicle:

Type of vehicle or trailer E-permit required?
4x4 or people carrier No
4x4 with an open back or separate cab Yes
Van or commercial-type vehicle (up to and including 3.5 tonnes *) Yes
Van or commercial-type vehicle (over 3.5 tonnes) Vehicles of this size are not allowed on site.
Box van Vehicles of this size are not allowed on site.
Trailer bed under 1.8m (6 feet) long ** No
Trailer bed or horsebox between 1.8m (6 ft) and 3m (10 ft) long ** Yes
Trailer bed over 3m long ** Trailers of this size are not allowed on site.
Two-horse trailer up to 3m in length ** Yes

* Vehicles larger or longer than a long wheel based transit van will not be allowed to enter sites
** Trailers are measured on the length of the load bed only

If you are hiring a commercial-type vehicle or trailer for three days or less the above restrictions apply.  However, you do not need to apply for an e-permit. Just take the hire papers and proof of residence in Oxfordshire to the HWRC.

If you are unsure whether or not you need an e-permit, please contact our Waste Management Group.

Definition of a commercial type vehicle

We class commercial-type vehicles as any of the following:

  • designed to carry goods, not people
  • no rear windows (this means rear windows which are side-facing)
  • no rear seats
  • an open back
  • a back which is separate to the main cab area.

Frequently asked questions

How many times does an e-permit allow me to visit a recycling centre?

E-permits allow 12 individual visits to Oxfordshire HWRCs over 12 months.

How do I renew my e-permit?

E-permits automatically renew after 12 months and are reset with 12 visits. You will no longer need to contact us to renew your e-permit.

How many e-permits can I apply for?

One e-permit at a time may be approved for a household. It is not permissible to apply for an e-permit for multiple commercial-type vehicles or for both a commercial-type vehicle and a trailer, or for vehicles to be registered to multiple addresses.

If I visit a site twice on the same day, is it classified as one visit?

If you visit a HWRC more than once in one day, each visit will be counted separately and your e-permit will be updated.

I do not live in Oxfordshire. Can I apply for an e-permit?

Only Oxfordshire residents with a valid household address are able to apply.

How long will the e-permits be valid for?

E-permits automatically expire if they have not been used for 24 months. Don’t worry because you will receive a notification two months prior to your e-permit expiring and you can reapply online or contact us to request an application form.

What should I do if I want to hire a commercial-type vehicle or trailer to take household waste to a HWRC?

If you are hiring a commercial-type vehicle or trailer for three days or less you do not need to apply for an e-permit. Just take the hire papers and proof of residence in Oxfordshire to the HWRC. The restrictions on the vehicle sizes and weight still apply to gain entry to the site. Any box vans or commercial-type vehicle weighing more than 3.5 tonnes laden cannot be used. Trailers with a load bed longer than 3m (10 ft) cannot be used.

Vehicles or trailers hired for more than three days will not be allowed to enter the HWRCs. However, in circumstances where the origin of waste is proven to be genuine household waste, the customer should contact the council’s Waste Management Group to arrange temporary access.

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

I have a vehicle which doesn’t require an e-permit but is used for trade purposes and is sign written. Can I take this to a HWRC in order to dispose of household waste?

Yes, however, you may be asked to fill in a Disclaimer Form if the waste type is associated with the advertised activity, or signage indicates it is a vehicle used for commercial purposes.

Can I take my waste to a HWRC in a taxi?

Taxis are able to access HWRCs without an e-permit, as long as they have the person who produced the waste (the householder who is paying the fare) in the vehicle with them. If they do not have the waste producer with them, they will be turned away.

If the taxi has waste from their own house, (and therefore the taxi driver is the one who has produced the waste, and they are not carrying a passenger) then they will need to complete a Disclaimer Form on each visit.

Larger taxis that have been adapted for disabled use are designed to carry people rather than goods and are not classed by us as commercial-type vehicles. They do not need an exemption letter to enter the site but need to follow the above guidelines depending on if they have the waste producer with them.

Does it matter what sort of vehicle I tow my trailer with?

Yes. Trailers will only be allowed access to a HWRC if they are towed by a car or vehicle that doesn’t require an e-permit. Trailers will not be permitted entry if towed by a commercial-type vehicle. Trailers longer than 3m (10ft) will not be allowed access under any circumstances.

My horsebox/van/trailer has a ramp/mechanical tail lift/tipping mechanism, can this be used on site?

Due to health and safety considerations, the use of vehicle or trailer ramps is banned on site. Any vehicles which fall within the size restrictions can use the site with an e-permit, but cannot use any form of ramp whilst on site. If you have a horsebox trailer we ask that waste is removed by the side entrance.

I live on a Ministry of Defence (MOD) base, do I need an e-permit?

Householders living on a MOD basis or property are required to apply for an e-permit if they own a commercial-type vehicle or trailer with a bed length between 1.8m - 3m (6ft - 10ft) and wish to visit the HWRCs.

In circumstances such as service personnel being sent away on short notice, the council will accommodate this as far as possible and authorise time-limited access to a HWRC.

The waste from non-residential MOD buildings and sites is not accepted at the HWRCs.

What happens if I don't have, or choose not to use my kerbside collection provided by the Waste Collection Authority (WCA)?

Householders would still be required to complete an e-permit application and to subsequently provide details of their opt-out from the kerbside services. Oxfordshire County Council would contact the relevant WCA for confirmation. Oxfordshire County Council upon receipt of satisfactory evidence would provide the equivalent number of visits to the householder, as they would have received kerbside collections, which for all areas would be once a fortnight or 26 visits.

Are tractors and quad bikes allowed onto the site? Do they need an e-permit? Are they allowed to tow trailers?

The typical size of tractors does not allow for safe movement and parking on the HWRCs, especially on smaller sites. Therefore tractors are not permitted onto the HWRCs in Oxfordshire. The council would consider making a concession in cases where the tractor is exceptionally small and it would remain the responsibility of the householder to contact us in advance, but no towing with a tractor would be allowed.

Quad bikes are allowed onto the HWRC and do not require an e-permit. They can tow using a trailer permit within the bed length limit.