Bradford Council is encouraging individuals to ‘show consideration for their neighbours’ in the lead-up to Bonfire Night.
Councillor Abdul Jabar, Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety, has conveyed a strong message in a dedicated video, emphasising that people should “enjoy themselves but also consider others”.
He goes on to say: “I think sometimes people don’t realise the impact it (fireworks) has on the whole community, including the elderly people who are ill. You’ve got families, you’ve got children who go to school in the mornings who are unable to go to school because of fireworks being let off.”
As part of the Bradford Community Safety Partnership, the council is preparing for Bonfire Night and making efforts to crack down on the unlawful and anti-social use of fireworks.
The recently released video on YouTube features speakers from the council, members of the public, Khadim Hussain, president of Jamiyat Tabligh-Ul-Islam, and Matt Henderson of Ravenscliffe Community Association.
Youth Worker Mohammed Azeem discusses the initiatives carried out by the council’s Youth Service to educate young people about the hazards and disturbances caused by fireworks. He also mentions the outreach efforts the service undertakes with partners, such as mosques, to raise awareness.
For several years, the council has been advocating for stricter regulations regarding the use of fireworks in the district. This can only be achieved through amendments to national legislation. The authority continues to lobby the Government for changes, which would involve reducing the noise levels of all categories of fireworks, prohibiting the sale of more powerful fireworks, and introducing licensing for individuals selling fireworks.
The sale of fireworks to the general public has been restricted since 2005, except for licensed traders. However, unlicensed traders are permitted to sell fireworks for Chinese New Year and the three days prior (the date of this celebration varies); Diwali and the three days before (the date of this celebration varies); Bonfire Night Celebrations (October 15th to November 10th); and New Year celebrations (December 26th to December 31st).
UK law stipulates that individuals must be over 18 to purchase, possess, or use fireworks. They can only be bought from a licensed vendor. If you acquire fireworks for personal use, you are only permitted to use them on your private property or on property where you have obtained the landowner’s consent. Setting off fireworks in the street or other public places without permission is a criminal offence.