Fireworks and the law

Under the Fireworks (Safety) Regulations 1997 all fireworks for use by the public must meet certain safety and performance standards.

Storage and Sale of fireworks

If you wish to store fireworks you will usually need to be licensed under the Explosive Regulations 2014. The Councils Licensing team can license storage of up to 2000kg of HT4 explosives. For amounts over this contact the HSE.

The Regulations 20 permit individuals to store up to 50kg of Hazard Type 4 fireworks for private use for up to 21 days, without the need to licence or register. However other requirements of the regulations such as storing these items safely, still apply.

Selling Fireworks

Fireworks can be sold by traders for: 

  • Chinese New Year and the preceding 3 days; 
  • Diwali and the preceding three days; 
  • 15 October - 10 November to allow Bonfire Night Celebrations, 
  • and 26 - 31 December for New Year celebrations.

 If you wish to sell fireworks at any other time, you will need an Annual Sales Licence as well as a valid Storage Licence. 

The Fireworks Regulations 2004 also prohibit the supply of fireworks louder that 120 decibels.

Where fireworks are sold, a statutory A3 size notice must be displayed.

When you can use fireworks

The Fireworks Regulations 2004 prohibit anyone under 18 from possessing fireworks, and anyone except professionals from possessing display fireworks.  These regulations also prohibit the use of fireworks at night (11pm - 7am) in England and Wales, with extensions for the following festivals:

  • until 1am following the first day of Chinese New Year
  • until midnight on 5 November
  • until 1am on the day following Diwali day
  • until 1am on the day following 31 December

These regulations are enforced by the police. There is a penalty of an unlimited fine or six months in prison for breach of the curfew.

You can report anti-social use of fireworks to your local Safer Neighbourhoods Team