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The Daily Express article "The non-fire night party"

Geoffrey Podger, HSE's Chief Executive, responds - 04 November 2006

Your report on Guy Fawkes celebrations at Ilfracombe Rugby Club ("The non-fire night party", November 4) quotes a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) spokesman. Express readers could be forgiven for assuming that his words "a sensible precuation" referred to the 'virtual' bonfire staged at this event.

In fact, his comment was in response to a question on stewards, which we believe may well be a sensible provision where large numbers of spectators are expected. Let me make it clear HSE is not in the business of banning bonfires. All our guidance on firework displays, first published in 1995, does is offer some pointers on where best to site them, e.g. a safe distance from flammable or other dangerous substances and overhead power lines and downwind of spectators.

Geoffrey Podger
Chief Executive

Updated 2012-09-11