Definition of a market

A market is a gathering of buyers and sellers of goods and merchandise and includes car boot sales. Events that raise money for one organisation, with stalls operated by the event organiser, are not classed as markets.

Types of market

Category 1

A licence is required for:

  • commercial markets
  • commercial car boot sales
  • agricultural shows
  • antique markets
  • plant and craft sales
  • farmers market (not meeting criteria at category 2)

Applications to operate new markets on the same day as Dorchester Market/Car Boot Sale (Wednesday/Sunday morning) will be refused.

Category 2

Non-commercial market type events

Existing events recognised as operating in the calendar year before 1 Jan 2001, not exceeding 15 stalls or not operating on more than 4 occasions a year will not require a licence unless they are materially changed.

A material change can affect the character, location, goods sold and number of events.

Applications for new events taking place on Wednesdays or at the same time as the Sunday Car Boot Sale (7am to 1pm) may be refused.

Charitable car boot sales / charitable type fund raising events for local community organisations

The event will not be classed as a market and no licence will be required if:

  • all proceeds of the charitable fund raising event are for the sole benefit of the named charity/fundraising group and
  • all stalls are manned by representatives of the charity/fundraising group

A licence is required in all other cases.

Farmers markets - promotional events

No licence is required as long as the event is promoting Dorset food products, supporting Dorset farmers and growers and run by non-profit making organisations with no remuneration to directors.

Licence applications

Licences are required for all types of markets if the location is within the radius of 6 and two thirds of a mile of Dorchester Market.

Licence applications may be refused for the following markets operating on the same day/time as Dorchester Market and Sunday Car Boot Sale:

  1. Category 1 markets
  2. Category 2 markets with more than 6 stalls

Category 2 markets with more than 6 stalls and operating on more than 4 occasions a year will require a licence. Category 2 markets operating before 1 January 2001 with more than 15 stalls and on more than 4 occasions a year will require a licence.

Licence fees

These fees are a guide only.

Market licence fees
Band Number of stalls Category 1 (per market)  Category 2 (per licence)
Band 1 0 to 20 £25 £10
Band 1 0 to 20  £10 (regular weekly or monthly markets, including seasonal markets and farmers markets) N/A
Band 2 20 to 30 £50 £10
Band 3 31 to 50 £100 £20
Band 4 51 to 100 £150 £30
Band 5 101 plus £200 £40

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