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Skin piercing registration


We require the registration of all practitioners and premises in Gateshead involved in skin piercing activities.

Skin piercing is any activity which includes skin penetrating procedures.

This includes: 

  • acupuncture
  • electrolysis
  • cosmetic piercing
  • tattooing 
  • semi-permanent skin-colouring

Regulation summary

In accordance with the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 (opens new window) as amended by the Local Government Act 2003, we adopted the Model Byelaws relating to skin piercing. These were approved by the Department of Health as Gateshead Council Byelaws.

The Byelaws (PDF) [3MB] require:

  • the premises and fittings connected with these skin piercing activities to meet certain standards
  • the persons involved and their assistants to be registered
  • you are to meet standards regarding cleaning and sterilisation of instruments, materials and equipment

It is an offence for a person to carry out any of the above skin piercing activities without registration. 

It is an offence to carry out any skin piercing activity from unregistered premises. 

The applicant must pay the relevant fee.

The premises will be inspected prior to registration being agreed. 

How to apply

The easiest and fastest way to apply for a person or premises registration is on our website.

Before you begin, make sure you have the following available to upload:

  • copies of any relevant qualifications or training
  • a passport size photograph
  • credit or debit card details

We will ask for these during your application.

After completing the form, before you pay and submit, you will be able to check and edit your answers.

Apply to register

Fees and payment

There is a one off fee payable before you can submit the application, please have your credit or debit card details to hand. 

Personal £148.70
Premises £291.50
Register both £440.20

Paper application

If you cannot apply online, then you can fill in the skin piercing paper application form and return it to us. 

Paper applications do take longer to process, up to 28 days to be completed. If possible we recommend you apply online.

Contact us if you need a paper application form. 

What happens next 

Following an application for registration, we will contact you to arrange a date for inspection.  On this visit, we will check for compliance with the Byelaws and the Health and Safety at Work Act.

Once provided, you must display a copy of the registration certificate at the premises and have a copy of the Byelaws available to view.

Registration does not expire and will not need to be renewed.

The registration is valid only within the area where Gateshead Council is the local authority.

Registrations remain valid as long the premises is used for the practice of acupuncture, tattooing, cosmetic piercing, semi-permanent skin-colouring or electrolysis. 

Once registered, you must inform us of any changes to the details provided. 

Register of people and premises

We are required to keep a register all people and premises registered, within Gateshead, for skin piercing activities. This is open to public scrutiny.

Contact us to view the register. 

Tacit consent

Tacit consent will not apply.   

This means that you must not carry out any of these skin piercings until we confirm you are registered.

Privacy notice

In compliance with Climate, compliance, planning and transport privacy policy we collect information to assist in processing your registration.  

Your details will be stored electronically.

We may share these details with other services within Gateshead Council, Government Agencies and external regulatory partners for the detection and prevention of crime.  

Read the Communities and Environment Enforcement Policy. This explains what will happen and the actions we can take against you if caught practicing without a licence.

Contact us

Environmental Health Team
Economy, Innovation and Growth
Gateshead Council
Civic Centre
Regent Street

0191 433 7007