Special treatments

Acupuncture, cosmetic piercing, electrolysis, semi-permanent skin colouring and tattooing

Every premises and every operator who carries out a special treatment must register, every operator must be registered at every premises they work at within the Reading borough. You must also register if your provide a mobile service or operate from your home address.

To register you must complete our online application form, supplying all the required information. This includes providing details of training you have received in infection control. All premises and all operators must comply with the byelaws applicable to each treatment (see below). The byelaws are a legal requirement, it is an offence not to comply with these. As part of your application evidence of training in infection control will be required to be provided for all operators.

You must also register to provide treatments at an event in Reading. Once you have registered for an event you will not need to re-register if you return for other events in the future.

Registration fees
Service Charge
Registration of premises (including one operator) £304
Each additional operator £53
Replacement of operator certificate £36

Once we have received your application we will carry out checks on the premises or operator, this may include an inspection of your premises. Where possible this will be carried out within 14 days of your application. Following these checks you will be issued with a certificate of registration and a copy of the byelaws, these must be displayed at your premises. You must not trade until you have received your certificate.

We cannot refuse to register a premises or operator unless they have committed an offence. We will inspect your premises to make sure that it and all operators meet the required standards (the byelaws). It is an offence not to comply with the byelaws or to breach the Health and Safety at Work Act, we can take legal action against you, this may result in your registration being removed by the Courts.

The legislation does not contain an exemption for physiotherapists as they are not classed as ‘medical practitioners’ by the General Medical Council. If a physiotherapist is providing acupuncture under the supervision of a medical doctor registered with the GMC an exemption can be given on receipt of written confirmation that this is the case.

It is an offence to tattoo someone under the age of 18. If you lose your certificate you can apply for a replacement (please see charges above). If you have changed your name and want to amend your certificate, you should contact the Food and Safety Team.


Acupuncture Byelaws

Cosmetic Piercing Byelaws

Electrolysis Byelaws

Semi Permanent Skin Colouring Byelaws

Tattooing Byelaws

Please see the data privacy notice for more details of how we keep your data secure.

Cosmetic interventions

In Reading, only the special treatments mentioned on this page require registration, this is under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982. Other cosmetic treatments may require registration outside of Reading.

Last updated on 12/04/2024