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Sales by competitive bidding (auction)

The Greater London Council (General Powers) Act 1984 requires any premises used for the holding of auctions and other sales by competitive bidding to be registered with the local authority.

Registration summary

The local authority has to register all premises that are holding sales by competitive bidding.

On payment of a registration fee, Trading Standards will issue a certificate to show that you have registered your premises/stalls at a particular address for the holding of sales of goods by competitive bidding in conformity with the provisions of the General Powers Act [83KB]​.

What you need to know before applying


  • The registration will be in force from the date of the certificate up to and including 31 March and is renewable annually.

Suitability of premises

  • We will take into account the suitability of the premises or stall, the application, and the occupier.


  • Often conditions [58KB]​ will be applied to the registration. Typically these will be that the Trading Standards Service shall be notified of the dates on which the auction(s) will take place and officers of the Trading Standards Service are to be given permission to inspect all aspects of the auction(s) at any reasonable time.


  • Exempt from registration are any sales where no substantial part of the sale goods are brought onto the premises and any sales wholly for the purpose of assisting the funds of a voluntary organisation.

How to apply

Before you start your application, please ensure that you have:

  • a valid credit or debit card
  • the full address of the premises at which your auction(s) will take place 
  • the reference number for any previous registration (if available)
  • the correct fee [391KB]

Application: Your online application will require you to register with gov.uk set up a business, an easy process that gives you an online account that you can use across different government services.

Help is provided about online applications.

Apply now


Subject to a few special cases, Section 25 of the Greater London Council (General Powers) Act 1984 [83KB] creates an offence of selling, or permitting the sale of goods by way of competitive bidding:

  • on premises in any London borough which are not registered under this part of the Act
  • on premises which are so registered, but in breach of a condition upon which they are so registered 
  • from a stall which is not registered under this part of this act with the borough council
  • from a stall which is so registered, but in breach of a condition upon which it is registered

Further information regarding the application process [48KB]»

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Article utilities:  Bookmark and Share Print Print this page Last updated: 06 Feb 2019 at 09:12