Apply for Halloween firework licences in good time – Justice Minister

Date published: 03 October 2022

Justice Minister Naomi Long has urged people to stay legal and safe if they are planning to use fireworks this Halloween.

justice minister Naomi Long pictured

It is an offence to buy or be in possession of fireworks without a licence and applications for the Halloween period must be submitted in good time to be processed.  Applications must be received by the Department of Justice by 21 October 2022.

Fireworks must be purchased from a retailer who has been registered by the Department of Justice. Fireworks bought from illegal sources may result in prosecution and the fireworks may not be safe.

Mrs Long said:  “If you are planning to use fireworks this Halloween, please submit your application to the Department of Justice in good time.

“Many people enjoy fireworks but they can cause distress, in particular to vulnerable people and animals, so I urge anyone planning to use fireworks to be considerate.”

Low-noise fireworks are available.  Making a simple change could help make Halloween more enjoyable for your neighbours and cause less distress to animals.

Mrs Long said: “Most events pass off without incident but I want to take this opportunity to ask people to act responsibly and to follow the firework safety code to avoid firework related injuries.”

Licence applications and a list of registered firework retailers licensed to sell fireworks are available on the NIDirect website 

Anyone who has information about the illegal sale and use of fireworks should contact the PSNI or anonymously call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Notes to editors: 

1.  Please go to NI Direct to get:

  • details on how to apply for a licence, including an application form;
  • a list of retailers;
  • Guidance for members of the public and information on the law surrounding fireworks and
  • Information and advice on using fireworks safely.

2. Information for retailers regarding the legislation regarding the storage of fireworks is available on the NIbusinessinfo website 

3. Completed application forms together with the appropriate fee should be returned to Firearms and Explosives Branch, Room 4.22, Castle Buildings, Stormont Estate, Belfast, BT4 3SG.

4. The Explosive (Fireworks) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2002 came into operation in May 2002 and made it compulsory for anyone wishing to purchase, possess and use fireworks to obtain a licence.

5. The licence fee where there are less than 100 spectators is £30 and increases incrementally, depending on the number of spectators. The fireworks listed on your licence are the only fireworks that you can purchase. If you require alternative or additional fireworks,  you must contact the Department’s Firearms and Explosives Branch to have your licence amended before making the purchase.

6. Media enquiries to the Department of Justice Press Office via Email

7. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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