Is someone’s bonfire causing a nuisance?

Bonfires can create excessive smoke and smell that others might not enjoy, especially if they have just hung out their washing! There are no bylaws or smoke control zones for domestic bonfires in North Norfolk and there are no specific times of the day when bonfires are prohibited.

The Council may be able to deal with bonfires under environmental protection law, and prevent further problems where someone is persistently causing a nuisance.

If a bonfire is bothering you:

  • Go and speak calmly to the person who lit the fire; they might not realise they are causing a nuisance.
  • If you suffer from fires regularly please contact the Environmental Protection team for advice.

If you are intending to have a bonfire, please remember these tips:

  • Only burn dry clean materials. 
  • Never burn household rubbish, rubber tyres, or anything containing plastic, foam or paint. 
  • Never add oils or other fuels to the fire.
  • Avoid burning on damp days when the smoke will linger. 
  • On warm, sunny days your neighbours might be using their gardens or have washing on the line – please be considerate. 
  • Try to position your fire where the smoke won’t blow directly into neighbouring properties or onto roads. 
  • Never leave a fire unattended or smouldering. 
  • Give your neighbours a bit of warning before lighting a bonfire, so they can be prepared or you could find a better time to light it.

Commercial bonfires and smoke

The disposal of waste via burning is restricted by law and is often not the preferred method.

If you have a problem with dark smoke or regular bonfires from commercial or trade premises, contact the Environmental Protection team for advice.

Smoke controlled areas

Many parts of the UK are smoke control areas where you can't emit smoke from a chimney unless you're burning an authorised fuel or using 'exempt appliances'. There are no parts in North Norfolk that have been designated as a smoke controlled area.