Abandoned, unwanted and untaxed vehicles

Abandoned vehicles update following the coronavirus (COVID-19).

The council has a legal duty to deal with motor vehicles that have been abandoned. This can be a costly process and we will therefore take steps to trace the owners and require them to dispose the vehicle.

Just because a vehicle is not being used does not mean that it is abandoned. It is often a matter for council officers’ discretion as to whether to declare it as abandoned.

In the absence of clear evidence that the vehicle is abandoned, the vehicle will be monitored in situ for 21 days to allow for the possibility that the owner maybe on holiday or in hospital etc.

In some instances, the vehicle will be referred to the local branch of the DVLA to deal with.

Once the owner of a vehicle has been identified, it is no longer considered abandoned and the council are not able to remove it unless it is considered to be dangerous. The owner will be required to dispose of the vehicle correctly or face prosecution.

Please use the following online form to report an abandoned vehicle to us.

Untaxed vehicles

The DVLA has an interest in vehicles that are untaxed and left on the highway. They will clamp, remove and dispose of any such vehicle.

If the vehicle is untaxed or SORN and parked on a public road then the resident can report the vehicle to the DVLA by completing an online form.

Residents can check the status of a vehicle’s tax themselves by entering their vehicle registration number.

Unwanted vehicles

You will need to contact a vehicle dismantler authorised to take scrap vehicles.

If it is a premature end of life vehicle (for example, as a result of a road traffic accident), your insurance company will deal with the removal and disposal.

You must make sure that the DVLA is given the correct notification regarding any change in the status of your vehicle.

Nuisance vehicles

Abandoned vehicles often get confused with nuisance vehicles. An abandoned vehicle is always a nuisance, but a nuisance vehicle is not always abandoned.

Examples of a nuisance vehicles include: poor parking, causing obstruction, broken down etc.

These will not be dealt with by the council.

Public streets are for the passage of people and traffic and no one has a right to park on any specific part of the highway. You have no right to park your car (or any other possession including trailers, caravans or boats) on the road outside your front door and the council is under no obligation to provide you with a space.

If you own a caravan then our advice is that you should arrange storage on a reputable site in the vicinity.

If you own a boat then our advice is that you should arrange storage at a local sailing club or boat park.