Registration - tattooing, cosmetic piercing, acupuncture, semi-permanent skin colouring and electrolysis


Persons undertaking the following activities must be registered with the Council:- tattooing; cosmetic piercing including ear and body piercing, acupuncture, semi-permanent skin colouring and electrolysis.  Registration covers both the person carrying on the activity and the premises used for that purpose.

The council has adopted byelaws which cover the cleanliness and hygiene of premises, practitioners and equipment. These byelaws are intended to prevent bloodborne virus and other infections occurring and can be found here.

Summary of legislation

The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 requires the above types of skin piercing to be registered with the Council.

The legislation can be found here.

Who needs to notify/apply

If you offer tattooing, acupuncture, ear-piercing or electrolysis in this District you must be registered with us.

Both the premises where the skin-piercing activities takes place and individual operators must be registered and once registered a certificate of registration will be issued.

At the point of registration all individuals who conduct skin piercing activities at the premises should be listed on the application form. An additional fee is required for each person undertaking skin piercing activities. 

Skin piercers registered with other local authorities who wish to practice within this District temporarily must register with the Council.

How do I apply?

You can complete an online registration form here, or apply to change a licence here. Alternatively you can download a form here, complete it and return it to the address given below.

Following receipt of the application form, payment, supporting documents and photographs, an appointment will be made where necessary to undertake an inspection and check compliance with the bye-laws. If the inspector is satisfied that conditions are met, you will be allowed to commence skin piercing.

Certificates of registration are normally issued within 28 working days. These must be displayed prominently with the bye-laws at the relevant premises.

Should you not satisfy the conditions, the officer will confirm in writing the work that is required. When you believe the work has been completed you should contact this office for a re-assessment. YOU MUST NOT START piercing until all conditions are met and agreed by the officer.

How long will it take to consider the notification/application?

There is no statutory period for determining applications; however, we aim to determine applications within 60 days.

The local authority may attach conditions to a certificate of registration.

How much will it cost to notify/apply?

The fee for registration of a person and premises can be found here.

Will tacit consent apply?

It is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from us within 28 days of submitting your application, please contact the Environmental Health Service at the address given below.

If my application is refused, how do I appeal?

There are no provisions in the legislation for refusal. Please contact the Environmental Health Service at the address given below in the first instance.

Any person who is refused registration can appeal to the Magistrates' Court. A court may give directions on the issue of a registration.

What if I have a complaint or concern?

Contact us in the first instance at the address below. Otherwise, if you are located in the UK,Advice Guide  will give you advice. From outside the UK, contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Public register?

There is no public register but a list of current registered establishments is available from the contact address below.

For further information

Advice and safe practice guidance for operators carrying out skin piercing activities has been produced by the Health and Safety Laboratory (HSL).

The guidance includes information on basic requirements for safe, clean premises, legal issues, waste disposal, infection control, aftercare advice and a checklist.  Appendices within each document also present examples of how a medical history questionnaire, consent form and aftercare advice sheet might be prepared for each of the three treatment areas.

Contact information

Environmental Health
Richmondshire District Council
Mercury House
Station Road
North Yorkshire
DL10 4JX

Telephone: 01748 829100

Fax: 01748 826186

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact Us

Richmondshire District Council
Mercury House
Station Road
North Yorkshire
DL10 4JX

Phone: 01748 829100
Fax: 01748 826186
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.