Despite the widespread abuse of fireworks in Bradford, the Government have rejected Bradford East MP, Imran Hussain’s call for greater powers for local authorities, police forces and trading standards to tackle the anti-social use of fireworks.
Following months of anti-social fireworks at all times of the day and night, Imran wrote to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities in November to urge the Government to consult on the maximum decibel level of fireworks, look at restricting the sale of fireworks, and grant local councils stronger licensing powers around the use and sale of fireworks throughout the year.
However, rather than support local residents, the Minister for Enterprise, Markets and Small Business recently bluntly rejected these calls, stating that the current powers that both Bradford Council and West Yorkshire Police have are sufficient, and that as a result, the Government have no plans to change the laws around either the sale or use of fireworks.
Whilst restrictions are in place of the sale and use of fireworks, in a response to Imran regarding several constituent cases he raised, Bradford Council nevertheless stated that in Summer 2022, a review by the council’s Department of Health and Wellbeing and Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee found that Bradford Council and other local agencies had are “limited”, and that what is needed is changes to the law that can only be implemented by the Government.
Speaking on his demand for tougher legislation and powers to tackle nuisance and anti-social fireworks, Imran said:
“Across Bradford, the inconsiderate and anti-social use of fireworks by a small minority of people is causing misery for so many residents who are kept up at night and left exasperated during the day by these nuisance fireworks, and it is high time that the Government give local councils and police forces the powers that they need to crack down on this problem.
“I am therefore deeply disappointed and angered that the Government will not even look at what additional powers they could give to local authorities, and that they have instead seemingly chosen to look the other way and ignore the impact that the anti-social use of fireworks has on the lives of local people.
“Whilst the Minister believes that existing laws restrict the sale and misuse of fireworks, his response is clearly ignorant to the reality that these current powers just are not sufficient to tackle the problem that we face. What we really need are tougher powers, including on licensing, to stop the abusive use of fireworks in an anti-social manner that causes so much misery for my constituents.”