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Guidance for placing a skip on the highway

General guidance

Before placing a skip on the highway, the hirer or skip company must first get a permit from Gateshead Council. Permits should be obtained before the skip is placed on the highway. You could be subject to enforcement action for not getting a permit first.


  • A skip must not be more than 5 metres long and 2 metres wide
  • The skip must be marked at both ends with the fluorescent red and yellow diagonal lined signs.
  • During the night the skip must be lit with at least one yellow lamp on the side nearest the traffic.
  • Cones must be used to mark out the skip for traffic, 3 cones in a diagonal line are needed at the end facing oncoming traffic a keep right sign can also be used.
  • The skip needs to be clearly marked with the owners name and telephone number or address.


  • Each skip should not be placed within 14 metres of any authorised bus stop or road junction. It should not contravene any traffic regulation order, obstruct a footway or footpath, or obstruct access to any property without prior consent from the property owner.
  • Each skip must be placed on the highway with the longest side of the skip parallel to the highway. Nearest to the side of the highway without blocking any drains.
  • A minimum unobstructed carriageway width of 3.7 metres shall be maintained at all times.


  • A skip must not have dangerous materials stored in them or any other items that would cause any disturbance to those using the highway such as dusty material
  • The skip is also to be kept clean and tidy, with any materials falling from it onto the highway to be cleaned up straight away.
  • The skip should not be filled above the rim of the skip. As soon as it reaches the edges of the skip it is full.
  • When a skip is full you should notify the skip company within 1 day to arrange collection. The skip company should then remove within 1 to 2 days maximum.

Further information

  • If the skip is required for more time than the permit allows the user must apply for more time at least 48 hours before the original permit expires.
  • Valid public liability insurance is also required this must be for a minimum of £5 million.
  • A valid waste carrier license is required.
  • The council can change the conditions of a permit whilst it is in use.
  • If the skip becomes a problem to highway users the Council or the police can ask for it to be moved.

It is a criminal offence not to get a skip permit or to break rules relating to skips. You can be taken to court and prosecuted for not following the rules. The rules apply to the company providing the skip, the person hiring the skip and the people using the skip. If you are ever in doubt about what the rules are or what something means, please contact us.