Pollokshields residents call for ban on fireworks

Community campaigners are calling for a ban on the sale of fireworks across Scotland, with their use restricted to organised licensed displays
Community campaigners are calling for a ban on the sale of fireworks across Scotland, with their use restricted to organised licensed displays

Community campaigners in Pollokshields are backing calls for a ban on fireworks across Scotland – except at organised licensed displays.

The ban is being called for as the Scottish Government consultation on fireworks came to an end this week.

The consultation attracted over 16,000 responses from across Scotland.

Pollokshields has had some of the worst problems with fireworks in Scotland.

And campaigners are now calling for a complete ban.

In November 2018 problems got so bad in the area the police were called to disperse gangs of men setting off industrial-sized fireworks in the street.

The public and police had fireworks aimed at them, with some residents describing it as like living in a war zone.

Pollokshields is in the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s constituency, and she attended a meeting shortly after bonfire night to hear the concerns of the community.

Also in attendance at the meeting were police, fire service and trading standards staff, local councillors and more than 200 residents.

The consultation was launched shortly afterwards, with the Scottish Government promising to look at the regulations covering fireworks.

Danny Phillips, a resident of Pollokshields, said: “The fact that over 16,000 people have taken part in the consultation tells you that Scotland has a problem with fireworks.

“We are calling for a complete ban on fireworks except in licensed displays. Firework night is hated by the vast majority of people in communities like ours.

“But young children, pets, disabled people in particularly can find it frightening.

“I don’t see why we allow these massive industrialised fireworks to be set off, even on private land.

“They are a menace and we are calling on our governments to take action on the sale and use of fireworks.

“We have been promised, by the First Minister, that something will be in place before next bonfire night 2019. So we now await to hear what plans they are proposing.”

Minister for Community Safety Ash Denham said: “Over the past three months we have had a phenomenal response to our fireworks consultation with more than 16,000 people responding.

“This is clearly an issue which many people feel passionate about and, while the existing legislation on the sale of fireworks is reserved to Westminster, I am determined to do all I can to reduce any negative impact on our communities.