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Bonfire Night and the Law


Bonfire Night and the Law

There are no specific laws against having a bonfire, but there are laws for the nuisance they can cause. The main two being that you can’t use them to get rid of household waste if it will cause pollution or harm people’s health. This includes burning it so beware of plastics etc

You could also be fined if you light a fire and you allow the smoke to drift across the road and become a danger to traffic. In 2011 there was a multi vehicle accident on the M5 which was believed to have been caused by fog and smoke from a nearby display was a contributory factor. If authorities believe your bonfire is causing a nuisance, firefighters can extinguish it although it is unlikely if private family bonfires are sensible and supervised.


In relation to fireworks there are several laws that cover the sale, possession and use of fireworks.
It is illegal to sell fireworks to people under 18. You can be fined up to £5,000 and imprisoned for up to 6 months for selling or using fireworks illegally. You could also get an on-the-spot fine of £90.
It is also an offence for people under 18 to possess fireworks in a public place. There are also laws concerning the storage of fireworks however these would likely not apply if you are simply buying smaller quantities available in supermarkets etc.

November 5th is also one of nights you can use fireworks after 11pm. On bonfire night the restriction is lifted until midnight.

Ultimately fireworks are dangerous incendiary devices and should be used sensibly for everyone to enjoy bonfire night. Occasionally they are used incorrectly and people can find themselves seriously injured or facing criminal offences including public order offences, arson and criminal damage. All of which can carry periods of imprisonment if convicted.

Stay safe

Hopefully everyone stays safe and enjoys the evening. If you need any assistance with any of the offences mentioned here or any other criminal matter please call on team on 0151 480 5777 or fill out our contact form. 

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