TOM ARTHUR MSP WELCOMES ANNOUNCEMENT OF FIREWORK REVIEW GROUP MEMBERSHIP

Group to consider restrictions on fireworks use.

Local SNP MSP Tom Arthur has welcomed news that an expert group including police and animal protection representatives have met for the first time to consider restricting the use of fireworks.

Following widespread public support to reduce the negative impact of fireworks, the group will consider available options to restrict the use of fireworks on private property and the times at which they can be let off.

The full membership of the Firework Review Group has been announced by Community Safety Minister Ash Denham.

Commenting, Tom Arthur MSP said:

“After Bonfire Night last month, I am all the more aware that people across Renfrewshire South want to see a ban on the public sale of fireworks.

“People are understandably calling for an end to the unnecessary stress caused to friends, family, neighbours and pets by inconsiderate individuals who, despite repeated public information campaigns, continue to use fireworks irresponsibly.

“This group will have a vital role in informing the future approach to fireworks in Scotland and will now consider how best to use the powers at Scotland’s disposal to ensure fireworks are used safely and do not cause harm, distress or serious injury.”

Former Chief Fire Officer and Chair of the group Ali Hay said:

“I am pleased to take on the role of chair of the review group to consider the options we have available, and I look forward to working with all members of the group to develop our recommendations on what change is needed.

“The work of the group will play an important role in ensuring everyone is able to enjoy fireworks safely and appropriately and minimise any inappropriate or dangerous use.”

ENDS

Background

The Scottish Government’s Fireworks Action Plan Promoting the Safe and Appropriate Use of Fireworks in Scotland was launched earlier this year and sets out a number of action points to reduce the negative impact of fireworks.

The full membership of the Firework Review Group is:

  • Chair – Alasdair Hay
  • the British Firework Association
  • the British Veterinary Association
  • NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde
  • Police Scotland
  • the Scottish Community Safety Network
  • the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
  • Glasgow City Council (Licencing)
  • the Scottish Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
  • the City of Edinburgh Council (Trading Standards)
  • Veterans Scotland
  • the British Pyrotechnics Association
  • Community Action Blackburn
  • CoSLA

The group will operate for a period of up to nine months and will present its final recommendations to Ministers in Summer 2020.

The Scottish Government’s consultation on fireworks ran for 14 weeks and 16,420 responses were received. It found:

  • 94% of people want to see tighter controls on the sale of fireworks
  • 93% want to see stronger regulations to ensure animals are not caused unnecessary suffering as a result of fireworks misuse
  • 92% feel there should be tighter controls on fireworks use
  • 87% would support an outright ban on the sale of fireworks

Controls over the sale of fireworks are reserved to the UK Government.