the display of paper tax discs
Check if a vehicle
Report an abandoned
Recover a vehicle removed by the
The Council operates a service to investigate alleged abandoned
vehicles and, if appropriate to arrange for their removal.
This process is carried out under the legislation from
the Refuse Disposal (Amenity) Act 1978.
A vehicle which has been deemed abandoned,
depending on its circumstances, will be removed to storage and
where possible a notice will be sent to the registered keeper
giving a specific time period of 7 days in which to claim
ownership. Following this period, if the vehicle is not claimed it
will subsequently be disposed of.
REMEMBER: Abandoning a vehicle is a criminal offence and
you could be prosecuted. The offence carries a maximum fine of
£2,500 or 3 months imprisonment.
What is an abandoned vehicle?
There is no legal definition of ‘abandoned’
and this guidance does not seek to create one. Local authority
officers have the freedom to use their discretion when making
decisions on abandonment.
However, the following characteristics are
generally common to abandoned vehicles and one or more of the
following could assist a local authority officer in making a
decision on abandonment.
(a) Untaxed, with
(b) No current vehicle keeper on the Driver and Vehicle
Licensing Agency’s (DVLA) record
(c) Stationary for a significant amount of
(d) Significantly damaged, run down or
(e) Burned out
(f) Lacking one or more of its number
(g) Containing waste
This is not an exhaustive list and a vehicle
would not have to be displaying the full list to be considered
What happens after a suspected abandoned vehicle is
The Council will inspect any vehicle reported, but will only
remove a vehicle if the Investigating Officer is satisfied that the
vehicle is abandoned in accordance with set criteria. In
making this decision the Investigating Officer will consider a
range of factors such as the age and condition of the vehicle,
whether it is displaying valid tax, and anything that indicates
that the vehicle is not in regular use.
The Council will not normally remove a
vehicle that is taxed and in good condition unless there is strong
evidence that it has not been in use for a long time and
has been left on the highway or on private land without permission
of the landowner/Highways Department.
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