People often have the misconception that fireworks can be let off anywhere. Unfortunately, they are mistakenly wrong!

You cannot use fireworks in public places as the law has deemed this as unacceptable. UK law states that you can only set off fireworks in private places, these being locations owned by yourself or locations which have been granted permission by relevant land owners.

Some examples of public places which are deemed as unacceptable for fireworks displays are listed below:

  • Public Roads, Streets & Car Parks
  • Public Parks, Forests & Nature Reserves
  • Public Beaches & Caravan Parks

Letting off fireworks in a public place where there are children and animals is no doubt unethical and reckless behaviour. It is illegal to let off fireworks in the street and those caught can be prosecuted under the Explosives Act 1875. To summarise, firing in such locations and conditions is not only extremely hazardous, but also illegal.

If however you have been granted permission by local authorities or land owners of these public places, to conduct fireworks displays, please make sure you have informed the Police and Fire Brigade so they’re on standby, should any problem arise. Risk assessments are always advised regardless as to whether displays are performed in private or public places. There are a large number of factors which could impact your display, some of which are listed here - overhanging trees, uneven ground, strong and powerful winds. All of these could result in the fireworks trajectory being compromised and your display being highly dangerous.

In short, fireworks are hazardous and should be used sensibly. Lighting fireworks in a public place is irresponsible and negligent. Failure to adhere to the law could result in the following:

  • Up to a £5,000 fine and/or
  • Up to 3 years imprisonment

Firework celebrations should be fun and enjoyable, so don’t dampen the mood by using them irresponsibly or doing displays in places which you are not supposed to do so!

Have fun with fireworks, be safe and use fireworks responsibly!