Over the years we have established a pretty good idea of what comprises a great car boot sale. Of course, we can't do much about the weather and there's always an element of luck regarding the number of people who attend each week. However, there are some things which we feel should be common to all car boot fairs for no other reason than to make it a safer and more pleasant experience for anyone, buyer or seller, when attending a boot sale.
With this in mind we have created the Car Boot Junction Approval Scheme. Car boot operators who are members of the scheme do their best to ensure that they meet the following criteria at each sale they operate. Those who do qualify to have our approval stamp added to their listing and the opportunity of additional promotion of their boot fairs (coming soon).
The provision and marking of designated parking spaces close to the sellers area specifically for Blue Badge holders. Availability of these spaces must either be made clear at the entrance to the boot sale or, as a minimum, parking attendants must point out the availability on identification of a Blue Badge holder.
The provision of toilets, including toilets with disabled access. These must be within car boot sale grounds or within 100 metres of any given car boot entrance/exit, i.e. it is acceptable to count the toilets belonging to a public building where the car boot is held (with building owner's permission) e.g. a school. It is not acceptable to send people 1/2 a mile down the road to use the ones at the nearest supermarket. These toilets must be kept reasonably clean and access to and from unrestricted by rubbish, muddy puddles and stray sellers.
There must be an active policy in force to mitigate the sale of counterfeit, stolen and unsafe goods. Ideally this should be a written policy available on request, but as a minimum notices should be placed at the sellers entrance and at the main office (if applicable), notifying sellers that a policy is in force. In addition random spot checks of sellers goods should be carried out each week (this may be done anonymously using a mystery shopper approach to avoid embarrassment.) We recommend the following wording "We actively operate an Anti-Counterfeiting, Stolen and Unsafe Goods Policy. Spot checks are carried out of goods offered for sale and we reserve the right to refuse admission or to ask a seller to leave without refund should they be found to be selling counterfeit, stolen or unsafe goods. In such cases, Trading Standards and/or the Police may be notified." The policy must be enforced.
Sufficient rubbish bins should be made available to prevent general littering, especially around refreshment kiosks. The land should be cleared at the end of the day of any remaining litter and arrangements made for appropriate and legitimate removal of waste, in sufficient a timescale that it does not become a health risk or hazard to wildlife or livestock.
Where the buyer's entry fee is not collected on entrance to the car park but on entrance to the seller's area, a policy to readmit buyers without charge who wish to take goods back to their vehicle before returning to browse, must be in place.
Food and drink must be available on site or within 100 metres of any given car boot entrance/exit.
At least one qualified first aid person must be on the car boot operators team during the car boot operating times, equipped with a basic first aid kit, mobile phone and emergency contact numbers.
A lost and found policy must be in place with a recognised place for property, including children and dogs, to be brought which have been misplaced by their owners. We recommend this is the main car boot office/hut, where such exists.
Where dogs are not allowed in the main car boot area, a policy must be in place for parking attendants to keep an eye out for dogs left in vehicles on hot days. Where dogs appear to be in distress all efforts should be made to contact the owner and if necessary the RSPCA.
Full contact information for the car boot operator must be available to CarBootJunction.com even if left unpublished.