It is against the law for
- anyone under 18 to possess fireworks
- anyone except professionals to possess display fireworks in a public place
For more information see Fireworks (Amendment) Regulations 2004.
These regulations also prohibit the use of fireworks at night (11:00pm- 7:00am), with the following extensions for festivals:
- until 1:00am on the night of the Chinese New Year
- until 1:00am on the night of Diwali
- until 1:00am on the night on New Year's Eve
- until midnight on 5 November
These regulations are enforced by the police. There is a penalty of up to £5,000 or 6 months in prison for breach of curfew. The supply, purchase or possession of excessively loud fireworks over 120 decibels are also prohibited.
Contact Trading Standards if the fireworks seem too loud or appear to be sold outside the permitted times to underage persons.
How to avoid causing a risk of nuisance to neighbours
- tell your neighbours you are planning to let off fireworks
- use appropriate fireworks - when buying fireworks, try to avoid noisy ones in sensitive locations
- make sure pets and other animals are safely away from fireworks
- if you are using fireworks for a celebration, a Friday or Saturday is preferable and make sure they are over by 11:00pm
- avoid letting off fireworks in unsuitable weather
- let off your fireworks in an open garden area - noise bounces off buildings and smoke and pollution can build up in enclosed spaces
- if a neighbour complains that you are disturbing them, their pets or livestock, be considerate
- after your display, clear up firework fallout and dispose of it safely