Advice and guidance when having a garden bonfire

March 2016

The Parish Council has received a complaint from a Parishioner about being subjected to bonfire smoke.  It is alleged that, over the last month, they have been subjected to bonfires where the smoke is directed at their side of the road.  Behind the people who are lighting the bonfires is plenty of open space over which the smoke could be directed if the wind is taken into consideration when deciding when to have the bonfire.

It is also alleged that those managing the bonfire are burning green wood which causes excessive smoke.  There is not a little irritation that those lighting the fires do not consider first alerting neighbours to the fire so that they have an opportunity to close windows and doors. 

To assist those who are considering having a bonfire, please note the following advice from the Local Government website:

There are rules relating to bonfires and the nuisance they can cause.

Burning domestic waste

You can’t get rid of household waste if it will cause pollution or harm people’s health. This includes burning it.

You can get rid of household or garden waste by composting or recycling it. Contact your local council to find out how to dispose of garden waste and about recycling in your area.

Danger to traffic by smoke

You could be fined if you light a fire and you allow the smoke to drift across the road and become a danger to traffic.

Complain about a neighbour’s bonfire

Your council can issue an ‘abatement notice’ if a neighbour’s bonfire is causing a nuisance. A bonfire must happen frequently to be considered a nuisance.

Your neighbour can be fined up to £5,000 if they don’t stick to the notice.