Business advice and support

Let’s work together to help our city thrive

We all want to help ensure that Southampton is a great place for everyone to live and work. To help us achieve this and help ensure Southampton is a clean and safe city, we have produced this web page for businesses. The below outlines some of the legal obligations placed on businesses which you may not already be aware of, and ensure that you have the information you need so you can comply with them.

Commercial waste

Regardless of the commercial waste provider you use, your bins should be made accessible on your scheduled collection day, and then be brought back in once they have been emptied. If bins are left on the pavement and street, it not only makes it difficult for pedestrians (particularly the disabled and those with pushchairs), but it makes it difficult for us to keep pavements clean.

If you find it difficult to store your bin off of the pavement, please get in touch and we can see if we can help you.

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Commercial waste

Find out more about our commercial waste services

Pest control

Pest control, if not used as a preventative measure, can become a major problem for businesses in any industry. This is particularly true for the hospitality sector, as success relies on a reputation for excellent hygiene and a safe environment for both staff and customers. There is also rigorous legislation in place to enforce good health, hygiene and pest control, which businesses need to be aware of.

As your local authority we are legally responsible for inspecting food and beverage businesses and we can do this at any point in the production and distribution process. As a business owner you should be aware of your responsibilities and know that we could take action under any of the following acts:

  • The Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 – this ensures that local authorities have a duty to ensure that an area is kept free from rats and mice.
  • The Public Health Act 1936 – gives local authorities the power to serve notice on a building owner to eradicate vermin and the conditions causing an infestation.
  • The Environmental Protection Act 1990 – powers to tackle poor conditions that could cause an infestation.
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Pest Control

Find out more about our pest control services

Trees and vegetation

Tree and vegetation maintenance

Did you know that if your business has vegetation or trees that grow over a pavement or public highway it must be managed to ensure the carriageways and footpaths are free from hazards?

Under Section 154 of the Highways Act 1980, failure to comply could result in a formal notice being given to you which would outline the next stage of action. We want to work together with businesses to resolve any issues, and avoid formal action from being taken.

Protected trees

Before you remove, or significantly prune, any trees from your businesses’ premises we advise you to check the tree is not protected. This could be under a Tree Preservation Order, a conservation area restriction, planning condition or possibly as a covenant on the land.

Tree Preservation Orders provide protection for designated trees, making it illegal to prune or fell them without your local authority’s permission. As a council we take the protection, and safeguarding of the city’s trees seriously, so much so that you could be fined up to £20,000 if caught illegally felling a tree. However we would rather not have to implement such drastic measures.

 If you are planning any works that affect trees, please check our TPO register

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Tree works

Find out more about our tree work services

Commercial and HGV fleet

You will be aware of the relevant testing that needs to be undertaken for your industry. This could include:

  • LOLER (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations) certification 
  • Operator license safety inspections 
  • Brake testing 
  • Class 4 and 7 MOT testing
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MOT service

Find out more about our MOT services and vehicle testing

Graffiti removal

Whilst we have a team dedicated to removing graffiti on public land, we do not deal with graffiti on private or commercial property free of charge. You can however ask our specialist team for a quote.

We hope you don’t, but should you fall victim to graffiti on your land, we recommend that in the first instance you report this to the police. Make sure you take note of the crime reference number and check with your insurer to see if this is covered under your policy.

Find out further information and ways to report graffiti on public land.

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Commercial street cleansing services

Find out more about our cleansing services