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Organising firework displays

Firework displays should be enjoyable and spectacular occasions – but they obviously need some responsible planning. The good news is that there is straightforward guidance to help you.

If you are organising a major public event, you will clearly need a robust and detailed approach to planning as well as professional involvement. If you are holding a local firework display, such as those organised by many sports clubs, schools or parish councils, you still need to plan responsibly, but the same level of detail is not necessary or expected. Below are some tips and guidance to help you.

Before the event:

On the day of the event:

The morning after:

Additional points to consider if you are organising a major public display

For major displays, particularly those involving category 4 ‘professional’ fireworks or very large number of spectators, a more robust approach is obviously needed.

Guidance on Firework displays (CBI publication)

Guidance on firework displays has been produced by the Confederation of British Industry Explosives Interest Group (CBI EIG).

Working together on firework displays – aimed at professional firework display organisers and operators.

Giving your own firework display – aimed at all other firework displays.

Insurance

Most employers are required by law to insure against liability for injury or disease to their employees arising out of their employment. The Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969 ensures that you have at least a minimum level of insurance cover against any such claims.

Public liability insurance is not required by health and safety law. However, if you are manufacturing or storing explosives (including fireworks) you may wish to take out public liability insurance. Many industry trade associations and professional bodies require this as a condition of membership. Professional display operators using category F4 fireworks, T2 theatrical pyrotechnics or P2 pyrotechnic articles are required by product safety law to have public liability insurance in place covering their use.

Updated 2020-02-13