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Bonfires and Smoke

The Law

Currently there are no bye-laws which restrict or ban bonfires.  However, we can investigate complaints about smoke from bonfires.

Under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, we can take action against anyone whose bonfire causes a statutory smoke nuisance to their neighbours.  A statutory nuisance is much more than just being able to smell or see smoke, it has to have an unreasonable effect on a person's enjoyment of their home or garden.

If a bonfire causes a statutory smoke nuisance, we will issue an abatement notice telling the person causing the nuisance to stop, or to prevent it from happening again.  If they do not keep to the conditions in that notice, they could be fined up to £5,000 or £20,000 if it is a business..

Under the Clean Air Act 1993, it is an offence for any business to have a bonfire which causes dark smoke, regardless of whether anybody else is affected.  The fines could be up to £20,000 for each offence.

We will ask anyone who complains about a bonfire nuisance to fill in a set of diary sheets to record when and how the bonfire affects them.

Do's and Don'ts

First of all you should consider whether it is necessary to burn your waste.

You can recycle many items, including garden waste, by using our kerbside recycling scheme, the recycling centres for household waste and the various recycling banks around the district.  To find out more about recycling in Fareham or recycling in general see the links at the bottom of this page.

If you do decide to have a bonfire, follow the simple rules below:

Fareham Borough Council Waste and Recycling

Waste and Recycling in Hampshire External Hyperlink


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