Burning Waste Guidance

While it is not illegal to have a bonfire, creating smoke that causes a nuisance is an offence under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, and allowing smoke to drift over nearby roads may also lead to prosecution under the Highways (Amendment) Act 1986 if it endangers traffic.

Remember that smoke from bonfires can be annoying to neighbours, ruining their enjoyment of their gardens, and preventing them from opening windows and hanging out their washing.

As an allotment tenant your tenancy agreement states that you must not cause any nuisance or annoyance to the Council or other allotment tenants or neighbouring householders.

Wherever possible you should aim to compost your allotments waste. Please see our Compost guide for information.

The general guidance points below MUST be followed if you do intend to have a bonfire on your plot:

• Keep bonfires to a minimum. Bonfires or burning should be limited to burning diseased plants and dry material that will burn without smoke. *

• The lighting of fires should be restricted to times that will cause minimum nuisance to local residents, e.g. an hour before dusk.

• Only have a bonfire if it does not affect neighbours and nearby residents, be aware of wind direction and whether other plot holders on the site have had a fire recently.

• Only burn waste generated on your plot and try to use a device that will contain the fire, for example, an incinerator bin.

• Always have quick burning fires, using dry materials and allow it to burn out whilst you’re still present on site. You must not burn green or damp materials or household rubbish that will cause smoke.

• Do not burn household rubbish, tyres, plastic or foam materials or similar as many of these give off toxic fumes and dense smoke.

• Do not burn rubbish from a business on an allotment.

• Do not leave a bonfire unattended.

• NEVER allow the bonfire to burn overnight.

• Be ready to put the fire out if you receive any complaints.

* Any additional material should be either composted or taken to the Waste Recycling Centre on Long Tens Way, Newton Aycliffe Business Park.

Tenants are advised that failure to comply with these guidelines may result in a £5000 fine and having your allotment tenancy determined.