Any person planning to keep explosives such as fireworks, safety cartridges or vehicle airbag detonators is required by law to have a current registration or licence.
In April 2005 new regulations relating to the storage of explosives were introduced. The new regulations refer to the net explosive quantity (NEQ) rather than gross weight. That is, the actual weight of the explosives without the weight of packaging.
Amounts that don't need to be registered
If you store less than 5kg of explosives that don't require an explosives certificate or less than 15kg of small arms ammunition, then you don't need to be registered or licensed. Certain exemptions apply to the short term storage of fireworks, please contact Trading Standards for more information.
Storing between 5kg and 250kg
If you wish to store between 5kg and 250kg (NEQ) you require an explosive registration certificate.
Storing over 250kg
If you wish to keep between 250kg and 2,000kg (NEQ) you require an explosive storage licence, please contact the Trading Standards Service.
How much will it cost?
All registrations are renewable annually and are not transferable from one person to another. The current fees for registration and renewal of registration are:
- £105 for one year for a new registration certificate (up to 250kg NEQ)
- £52 for one year for a renewal of registration certificate (up to 250kg NEQ)
- £178 for one year for a new storage licence (up to 2,000kg NEQ)
- £83 for one year for a renewal of storage licence (up to 2,000kg NEQ).
How to apply and pay
You will also need to apply for a fireworks licence if you intend to supply or expose for supply fireworks other than during the following periods:
- on the first day of the Chinese New Year and the three days immediately preceding it
- on the day of Diwali and the three days immediately preceding it
- during the period beginning on 15 October and ending on 10 November or
- during the period beginning on 26 December and ending on 31 December.
If you need to apply for a fireworks licence go to the Fireworks licence information page.
We will process your application and will normally send you a licence/registration document and receipt for your payment within three working days. In the event that we are unable to send these within this timescale we will contact you to explain the reason for the delay.
This information is a brief summary of the law as it relates to the storage of explosives. It is not an authorative document on the law and is only intended for guidance. For further details or clarification please contact the Trading Standards Service.
For further information
Download the Fireworks - A Guide for Retailers [PDF 89KB] business information sheet or contact:
100 Chesterfield Road South
Tel: 01623 452005