We receive more complaints about bonfires than any other form of air pollution. The polluting effect of low-level smoke is considerable, particularly in built up areas and bonfire smoke contains pollutants that can have damaging health effects. Bonfires often cause discomfort, inconvenience and bad feeling between neighbours.

  • any bonfire is a potential safety risk and can spread to fences and garden buildings
  • also, piles of garden waste are often used as a refuge by animals, especially hedgehogs

It is seldom necessary to light a bonfire, and garden waste can be disposed of in various ways.  If you need to dispose of garden or other waste we encourage you to use sustainable methods such as:

  • composting
  • shredding and recycling 

We are able to take formal action under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 when burning of garden waste is a regular occurrence and a statutory nuisance is caused. If we take action against you, you could be liable for a fine of up to £5,000.

Barbeques can easily cause annoyance through smoke and cooking smells so think of your neighbours: 

  • Site the barbeque so the wind blows smoke away from your neighbours' gardens.
  • Don't light the barbeque when neighbours have their washing out.

If you would like to report an ongoing nuisance caused by bonfires or barbeque smoke, please use the online enquiry form.