Fireworks and explosives registration and licensing

The Trading Standards Service is responsible for the licensing and safe storage of explosives, in the terms of The Explosives Regulations 2014. This includes products such as fireworks, marine pyrotechnics, small arms ammunition, airbags etc, but excludes more dangerous types of explosives where an explosives certificate is required for their acquisition.

Businesses and others storing more than a small quantity of explosives must be licensed to store the explosives with a separate licence needed for each premises. Storage of larger quantities of explosives will also require safety distances around the store. The licence is subject to the person proposing to store the explosives being a fit person, and the proposed location being suitable for explosives storage. Advice and application forms are available from the Trading Standards Service. The licensing fees are available at the Health and Safety Executive website.

Persons who wish to supply fireworks at dates other than 15th October to 10thNovember, 26th to 31st December, Chinese New Year and the three days immediately preceding this and Diwali and the three days immediately preceding this require an additional licence (subject to an additional fee) in the terms of the Fireworks Regulations 2004.

Inspections are carried out at all premises to ensure safe storage, and full advice is provided including guidance on preventing sales of fireworks to persons under 18 years of age.

Offences are committed if the regulations are breached and consideration may be given to reports being prepared for the consideration of the Procurator Fiscal.

It should be noted that the Health and Safety Executive is responsible for licensing of quantities of explosives over two tonnes net mass explosive, and for licensing in Harbour Areas. Police Scotland are responsible for licensing of explosives requiring a police certificate for acquisition and for registered firearms dealers.

Advice on firework displays is available at

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