Essential information for end of life vehicle dismantling, depollution and recycling

Adam Hewitt
green parts specialists

Who are the SMDA?

Scrap Metal Dealers Association Gillian Temple
President of SMDA, Gillian Temple

Since their formation 6 years ago, the SMDA (Scrap Metal Dealers Association) has been representing metal recyclers including ATFs. We got in touch with SMDA president, Gillian Temple to find out more about their Association and their determination to highlight the inequalities they see in the Scrap Metal Dealers Act and how they want the act to change. Gillian provided us with their history and the reasons why the SMDA was formed and brought us up to date on the work they are doing on behalf of scrap metal dealers.

The Scrap Metal Dealers Association was formed in 2013, after the British Transport Police began raiding ATF’s and Scrap yards, in what we believed to be, unlawful visits. Their actions stemmed from the change of an amendment to the Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012.

As scrap dealers and motor salvage operators we felt that:

  1.    British Transport Police had no jurisdiction
  2.    The law change didn’t apply to Motor Salvage operators.
  3.    Their actions were unlawful, and breaching the Human rights of everyone they visited/arrested or prosecuted during the period 2009 – October 2013

Our small group of dealers asked for help from solicitors who told us to just take the fine and forget it, not realising that the subsequent 2013 Act would ban us from getting a licence, if we were convicted.

We asked for help from other associations that felt we were too small fry to worry about and appeared to be aiding the police activities that were taking place around the country. So we formed our own Association, which took on each court case, and which we won every case without the aid of a solicitor or barrister.

In 2018 as our confidence and membership grew we took the Transport Police into the Royal Courts of Justice and they were found guilty of acting without jurisdiction in 2012 and that their warrants were “so shoddy they are void” according to the judge Sir Alastair McDuff.

Our Association now prides itself on 4 principles. P.E.G.S. Protection/Education/Guidance/Support. This year we have convinced Bath and North Somerset Council that charging £306 for a licence and then an extra £3270 for an imaginary maintenance fee should be taken into a court for a judge to decide if it was lawful. The council decided instead to refund the £3270 to every site and collector and ATFs that they had invoiced.

We are currently investigating Birmingham City council that has the highest licensing Fee of £1500. Their breakdown of that fee shows some accounting errors, so the council are now currently reviewing their position.

We offer free training to our members. This includes free templates to forms, free seminars on how to write your own Fire Prevention Plan page by page, and free information to queries and lots of helpful advice. We have a 24/7 help line number that members can use if they get in a situation in their yards or ATF or by the side of the road. We pride ourselves on being the most proactive Association in the country. We have teamed up with environment experts that offer reduced fees on WAMITAB training level 4 offering a 5 day training course off site, leading to a qualification.

We are the only Association – to date – that is invited to the British Transport Police Annual Conference on Metal crime, in which they will hear our views and opinions of our members. We have just helped rewrite the Canterbury Trust guide to heritage crime, commissioned by Historic England, ensuring that the guide to heritage crime is relevant to our members, is informative and does not assume we are the criminals. We have had enquiries from Licensing Authorities to train their staff, and from police forces that seek training in Scrap Metal and the SMDA 2013.

In the Autumn, we are holding a London Conference which we have invited police forces around the country and licensing departments, the Environment Agency, to talk about the Scrap Metal Dealers Act 2013, its failing and why the criminals are still operating.

As an Association we want to shift the focus away from battering the law abiding folk with a stick and join us (with a carrot) in getting rid of the criminal element. To do that, we need to revisit the past and start again, with a mutual aim, and a new Act of Parliament, preferably written with our input.

Should anyone whether an ATF or dealer or collector need more information as to what we can offer, we have a brilliant blog that is regularly updated at

If you need or want our protection education guidance or support we can be contacted at whether you are a scrap dealer, ATF, collector, police or licensing officer.


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Adam Hewitt

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The views and opinions expressed on ATF Professional are solely those of the original authors and other contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the editor, publisher or staff of ATF Professional.


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Owain Griffiths

Owain Griffiths

Head of Circular Economy at Volvo Cars

Owain joined Volvo Cars in June 2021 to lead Circular Economy in the Global Sustainability Team. The company has committed to being a circular business by 2040 and has financial, recycled content and CO2 based targets for 2025, all of which Owain is working across the company to make happen. Owain previously worked for circular economy consultancy Oakdene Hollins where he advised businesses on evidence led circular economy implementation. 

Turning into a circular business and the importance of vehicle reuse and recycling.

The presentation will cover the work Volvo Cars is doing to achieve 2025 but mainly focus on the transformational work towards 2040 and the business and value chain changes being considered. Attention will be paid to the way vehicles are being dealt with at the end of life and the complexities of closing material and component loops. Opportunities and challenges which Volvo Cars is facing will be presented including engagement with 3rd parties and increasing pressure from stakeholders.

e2e awards logo

e2e Total Loss Vehicle Management [e2e] is the UK’s only salvage and automotive recycling network with nationwide, environmentally compliant sites delivering performance resilience and service reliability to the insurance and fleet markets.  The network’s online salvage auction drives strong salvage resale values and faster sales.  e2e’s salvage clients have access to the network’s stocks of over 5 million quality graded, warranty assured reclaimed parts. 

The power of the network model means e2e has the ability to influence industry standards and is committed to continually raising the bar whilst redefining the role and perceived value of the salvage operator.  Network members adhere to robust service level agreements, against which they are audited, in order to ensure performance consistency and a market leading customer experience.  

The salvage and recycling operating environment is evolving rapidly, and e2e is anticipating, listening and responding to changing market needs.  Regulatory compliance, ESG, reclaimed parts, customer experience, EVs, new vehicle technologies, data and reputation risk are just some of many considerations linked to the procurement of salvage services.  e2e will drive further added value to clients and members through the adoption and application of emerging technologies, continuing to differentiate its proposition and position salvage services as a professional partnership. 

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