Firework Safety

On Fireworks Night - Do Things Right and Follow These Rules

Fireworks lighting up the night skyBefore your firework display takes place, please be aware that the Firework Regulations 2004 now make it an offence for fireworks to be released after 11 pm with the exceptions of Bonfire Night - 12pm and New Years Eve, Chinese New Year and the night of Dawali where the extension is till 1am. Breach of these curfews could result in you receiving a Fixed Penalty Notice of £100.

Also be aware that it is an offence for anyone under the age of 18 to be found in possession of a firework(s) in a public place.

Should you have any questions about this firework law please contact the Police, whom are the Enforcing Authority, rather than Cheshire East Council.

British Standard

Only buy fireworks from a licensed seller and only purchase fireworks that comply with BS 7114. Further information can be obtained from the Trading Standards Department.

Store your fireworks safely

Ensure they are in a closed box, stored somewhere cool and dry and out of reach of children and animals until they are needed; locked away out of sight and out of mind.

Pets hate bangs and flashes

And also get very frightened on fireworks night. So keep all pets indoors and close all curtains to make things calmer. Remember it's not just your own fireworks that cause distress, so may need to keep your pets indoors on several nights when other displays are taking place.

Think ahead and be prepared

Before you start, make sure you will be giving yourself enough room in a safe place to get to and from your box of fireworks while the display is going on. This is especially important if you are having a bonfire as well in ensuring there is a safe distance between the two. Have a full bucket of water handy for any emergency, and for putting used sparklers into. If you have the chance to get together with some other families, try to go to the home with the biggest garden and safest surroundings.

One at a time

You (or an adult that you choose) must be the only person letting off the fireworks and must not be under the influence of alcohol. Don't allow anyone else - especially children to do so while your display is going on. Let the fireworks off one at a time (not lots at once) and don't rush.

  • Light the tip of each firework at arm's length, using a safety firework lighter or fuse wick. Stand well back immediately once lit.
  • If one doesn't go off - don't go back to it - it could still be live, and could go off unexpectedly in your face. Right at the end of your firework night, douse the 'dud' with lots of water, then completely bury it in the ground and cover well.
  • Never throw a firework onto a bonfire.

Different fireworks mean different hazards

Read the instructions on each one carefully. ALWAYS read by torchlight never by a naked flame and follow them properly. Rockets, for instance, should be launched from a rocket launcher, not from a bottle.


  • Sparklers require careful handling
  • Light them one at a time at arm's length
  • Don't give one to any child under 5
  • Make sure that anyone holding a sparkler wears gloves
  • Never touch when just gone out as they will still be hot so ensure that once spent they are placed in a bucket of cold water.

No Fooling

Putting a firework in a pocket is stupid and dangerous -  throwing a firework is not only stupid and dangerous, but also illegal. It is a criminal offence to do so in a street or other public place therefore resulting in a Fixed Penalty Notice of £80.

Fireworks and bonfires don't mix with alcohol

Drinking alcohol presents an added danger when there are fireworks and bonfires around. So keep a vigilant eye on those that are drinking excessively and especially ensure the individual, as previously stated, lighting the fireworks is not under the influence of alcohol.

Watch that child

Keep children away from fireworks, and never let a child handle or light one. Even sparklers can be dangerous if unsupervised! Make sure that children are aware of the dangers and also aware of the fact that it is an offence for anyone under the age of 18 to be in possession of an adult firework in a public place.

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